Palissy the potter : The life of Bernard Palissy, of Saintes, his labors and discoveries in art and science, with an outline of his philosophical doctrines, and a translation of illustrative selections from his works

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.

PALISSY THE POTTER.

Ift53

THE LIFE

\Jol-*

OF

BBENARD PALISSY, OP SAINTBS, HIS LABORS

AND DISCOVERIES IN ART AND SCIENCE,

WITH AN OUTLINE OF

HIS PHILOSOPHICAL DOCTRINES, AND A TRANSLATION OF

ILLUSTRATIVE SELECTIONS FROM HIS WORKS.

BY HENRY MORLEY. Je n'ai point eu d'autre liure que le ciel et la terre, lequel est conneu de tous, et est donne a tous de connoistre et lire ce beau liure.' Palissy. *



IN

TWO

VOLUMES.

VOL.

II.

227846 BOSTON: TICKNOR, REED, AND

FIELDS..,.,



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THURSTON, TORRT, AND EMERSON, PRINTERS.

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CONTENTS OF VOLUME

CHAPTER PALISSY RESCUED

II.

I.

— THE DEDICATION OF HIS SECOND BOOK CHAPTER

1

.

II.

CONTENTS OF THE BOOK

CHAPTER

24

.

.

FURTHER CONTENTS OF THE BOOK

PAGE

III.

THE GARDEN AND THE

FORTRESS

38



CHAPTER

IV.

PALISSY REMOVES FROM SAINTES

.

.

CHAPTER

,

.

63

V. 80

PALISSY IN PARIS

CHAPTER

VI.

THE NATURALIST PUBLISHES, IN A LAST BOOK, HIS MATURED 94

OPINIONS

CHAPTER DOCTRINES 0$ PALISSY

I

WATER

CINAL AND THERMAL SPRINGS

A.ND

VII.

WATER-WORKS

— VOLCANIC ACTION

— MEDI.

.

103

CONTENTS.

IV

CHAPTER DOCTRINES OF PALISSY

:

VIII.

THE FOUNTAIN AND THE FLOOD

CHAPTER .

:

ALCHEMY AND THE ORIGIN OF MET-

CHAPTER DOCTRINES OF PALISSY

:

123

IX.

*••••«•»

DOCTRINES OF PALISSY ALS

.

J.*!

1

!

X.

THE ROCKS AND FIELDS

.

.

160

CHAPTER XL THE REWARD OF THE PHILOSOPHER



.

181

APPENDIX. NOTE

A.

— DATE

NOTE

B.

— TRAVELS

NOTE

C.

OF THE BIRTH OF PALISSY

191

OF PALISSY

EDITIONS OF THE

193

WORKS OF PALISSY

196

WRITINGS OF PALISSY. THE ARTIST IN EARTH

....

.

203

THE POTTER'S CLAY

.

229

THE NATURALIST LOOKING OUT ON EVIL DAYS

.

233

HISTORY OF THE TROUBLES IN XAINTONGE

.

259

.

280

.

294

EXPERIENCE OF NATURE

.

313

THE HUGUENOT'S PREFACE

.

335

A STUDY

HOW

TO

IN FORTIFICATION

GROW

.

RICH IN FARMING

.



PALISSY THE POTTER. CHAPTfR PALISSY

I.

THE DEDICATION OF HIS SECOND

RESCUED

BOOK.

Imprisonment of Bernard

Palissy implied stoppage

of decorative works upon the premises of Palissy put to death

people.

an ornamental

art.

Great

meant

men

many

wealthy

the extinction of

required the service of

the Potter, and stretched forth their hands, therefore, to

withdraw him from the gallows.

incited to their efforts

by

Perhaps they were

his virtue also.

Palissy in Saintes had been protected

men

of either faction.

known that

that he

worked

By for

had been erected

for

by

the Catholics

Montmorenci,

him

partly

by

the leading

was well

it

in

a building

the constable

himself; he held also a document, signed by the

of Montpensier,

forbidding the

authorities

'

Duke take

to

cognizance of or undertake anything against him or his

house.'

This had been

conceded

for

the

press purpose of ensuring the completion of the in progress for the

VOL.

II.

Constable Montmorenci. 1

ex-

work

To

the

2

PALISSY THE POTTER.

reformers

was known not only

it

that

he sympathized

Roche-

in their religious views, but that the

Count de

foucault had forbidden

on the workshop of

intrusion

all

la

the artist.

Nevertheless, Bernard had been prosecuted by the

dean and chapter of

town

his

men, he says,

;

have none occasion against me, except

many

urged upon them,

Holy Writ,

which

in

it

who have

in that I

certain passages of

times,

written that he

is

'

is

unhappy

and accursed, who drinks the milk and wears the wool 'of the sheep, without

by as much as

providing for

that ought to

a malefactor; and

is

it

been able

The

for themselves occasion

a true thing, that

depended on the judges of to

be put

to

death, before

any assistance. de Pons and his lady

to

Palissy,

wise

men

was

carried off

I

should have



the Sire de

— had

Pons

interfered

which had been decreed by the

of Saintes in their town-hall. '

at night

the Parliament of to

had

prevent the complete annihilation of the

workshop of

mercy

I

town, they would have

this

being king's lieutenant in Saintonge

From

if

to obtain

Sire

in time

to love

should be committed to destruction as

to desire that I

me

And

pasture.

have incited them

me, they have therein made

caused

it

expect,

by bye-roads

to

But Palissy Bourdeaux.

Bourdeaux he could have no

and once

Bourdeaux, the only

at

rescue that would be available must be the king's hand

The

stretched out from the throne. in Saintonge, the Sire

king's lieutenant

de Pons, had power to control

the justices of Saintes; but the Parliament of Bour-

deaux, in

and the

its

district,

swayed

the

justices of Saintes well

powers of the king,

knew

that if they could

d

INTERCESSION OF PATRONS. carry PaKssy to Bourdeaux, and there place

mercy of

him

at the

the Parliament, the interference of the king

himself alone could save him.

The

Sire de Pons immediately exerted himself; the

Seigneur de Burie and the Seigneur de Jarnac were equally

prompt

communicate with Montmorenci.

to

Palissy, in a dedicatory epistle to his great patron, the

constable, quietly assigns the motive of their zeal in

He had

his behalf.

said

gave him a safeguard,

how '

the

well

Duke de Montpensier

knowing

no

that

man

could bring your work to a completion but myself.'

He

adds,

named

that

seigneurs

delivered,

'

imprisoned, the above-

If Palissy

art,

to

be

work might be

had not acquired

his secret as

had not meant the extinction of

potter, if his death

an ornamental

me

took great trouble to cause

with the design that your

completed.'

a

when he was

in that

year 1562 he would have

died upon the gallows.

Montmorenci, being suddenly informed by friends

upon the spot of the

his

good

fate that threatened the

ingenious Potter, Master Bernard, lost no time in addressing the queen-mother, and securing the safety of his

workman.

in so trifling

Queen

who would,

of course,

a matter oblige the great constable, had

also a taste for the edict

Catherine,

patronage of clever

was therefore issued

in the king's

artists.

An

name, appoint-

ing Palissy Inventor of Rustic Figulines to the king

and

to

the

jurisdiction

constable.

This removed him from the

of Bourdeaux;

king, his cause could

for,

as a servant of the

come under no

than that of the grand council.

other cognizance

By

the

same

edict

Palissy received also, of course, such encouragement

PALISSY THE POTTER.

4

him

as public honor might afford

The

his art.

in the prosecution of

court protected Master Bernard, not be-

cause he was a shrewd observer, a good naturalist, or

a pure-minded reformer; the honor of

was bestowed on Palissy according

the

Potter,

protection

its

worker

in earth

own

designation of his calling, * in Earth, and Inventor of Rustic Figulines.' to his

The men who have for the life of Palissy,

'

been named as intercessors

just

were men of mark

in their

whose names are constantly recurring

time,

Worker

own con-

in

temporary records which extend over a large part of the sixteenth century. old

man who had

The Seigneur de

Burie was an

name

fought in Italy, and whose

has

already occurred upon these pages, in connection with the early

He

campaigns of Montluc.

ancient house of Saintonge, and

belonged

was now

to

an

lieutenant-

general of the king in Aunis, under the orders of

Antony, King of Navarre.

which

is

The Seigneur

of Pons,

we have

a town not far from Saintes, was, as

seen already, the king's lieutenant in Saintonge.

was

also

Count of Marennes, the famous

The Seigneur de

He

salt district.

Jarnac, Governor and Seneschal of

Rochelle, was a veteran soldier, chiefly famous for his duel,

fifteen

Seigneur de

years before

this

la Chateigneraie.

duel illustrates the times,

it

may

civil

As

war,

the story of that

be worth narrating.

In the last year of the reign of Francis arose at court, which very

Henry. #

l

Jarnac

The meaning of

much concerned

had communicated

Ouvrier de Terre, the

et

with the

to

I.,

scandal

the

Dauphin

the

dauphin

Inventeur des Rustiques Figulines.'

term,

'

plained in a preceding chapter.

Rustic Figuline,' has been exVol.

i.,

page 202.

PALISSY GETS AN APPOINTMENT.

O

from a great lady of the court,

flattering intelligence

which the imprudent dauphin had confided

to

some

friends.

His friends increased the circle of the reve-

lations,

and the enemies of the great lady, hearing the

story, published

use of

they could against

it

proceeded

The

originated.

whom

the

scandal had

who was no

great favorite

with

inquire

to

made the best or worst her. The king, incensed,

abroad, and

it

dauphin,

with his father, and had fallen recently into disfavor

by seeking

the recall of Montmorenci, dared not

his fault.

To check

avow

further inquiry, a friendly knight,

the Seigneur de la Chateigneraie, stepped forward and

declared that the unwelcome rumors had originated with

Chateigneraie was one of the two or three

himself.

most formidable knights

in

a court that laid the great-

on chivalry, and was accordingly a

est stress

favorite

companion of the king. He could literally take a bull by the horns, and felt, therefore, that he incurred little risk in doing so metaphorically in the present instance,

dauphin.

to protect the

lenge the

camp The

felt

compelled

to chal-

Hercules, who, with the true instinct

of a game-cock, victory.

Jarnac

crowed

in

advance over an easy

challenge was of course accepted, and

King Francis dying,

the combat,

which took place

at

Germain en Laye, before the new King Henry and the assembled court, was one of the first acts at which Henry assisted after his accession

sunset, in the park of St.

to the throne.

into

the

air

Chateigneraie,

and catch

while he galloped at

a feast beforehand

full

it

who

could hurl his lance

three times in succession,

speed over a plain, prepared

in his tent to celebrate his victory.

Jarnac was accounted a doomed man, but by a dex-

PALISSY THE POTTER.

D

known to de Jarnac, he wounded terous stroke,

day

this

in duels as the

coup

opponent in the ham, and

his

vanquished him completely.

Chateigneraie lay bleed-

ing under the sunset on the greensward of the park,

and was carried thence, not his tent, but to the

bed on which he was

the few remaining hours of

victory were always green

life.

duel, united with the Sire de

Burie in intercession for the is

The

to

while

away

laurels of this

upon the head of Gui de

Chabot Jarnac, who now, some

It

prepared within

to the feast

years after the

fifteen

Pons and the Seigneur de life

of Bernard Palissy.

a coincidence of no very startling character,

although perhaps worth naming, that the edict against

was arrested, had been dated by Henry II. from Ecouen, in June, 1559 while it was from his own labors at Ecouen that Palissy dereformers, under which Palissy

;

rived the patronage which saved his Palissy, saved

# The word

*

life.

from the power of the Parliament* of

Parliament/ which occurs often in

this narra-

must not incautiously be taken in our English sense. There were in France thirteen Parliaments, sovereign courts, lay and ecclesiastic, high courts of appeal for their respective There were attached to them notaries, attorneys, districts. tive,

fiscal attorneys, attorneys-general,

course, a president.

made

&c, each

They had cognizance of

court having, of

and criminal those under them

civil

and represented to the power of the king. The most ancient, and for a long time the only Parliament, was that of Paris, which gave immediate assistance to the king in his deliberations, and both by seniority and influence deserved the first rank among others of its The Parliament.' kind. It was often spoken of simply as Other Parliaments were instituted in different provinces at cases,

special laws,

'

different dates

exact date of

j

its

Bourdeaux was the establishment is unknown. that of

fourth, but the

RETURN OF PALISSY TO SAINTES.

7

Bourdeaux, and being thoroughly protected now against

from the belligerents on either

hostility

his family,

and quietly resumed

his occupations in the

Churches had been

half-depopulated town of Saintes. battered, ter

and

in the streets, or sent to die

The workshop

upon the gallows. thrown open

Friends of the Pot-

antiquities destroyed.

had been slaughtered to the

side, returned to

sky, and

its

of Palissy had been

broken doors invited

Bernard made the requisite

the intrusion of the people.

and wiped away the traces of the

repairs,

interruption,

while he not only resumed his old work, but also his old habits

among

the

woods and

of speaking freely what he

felt

fields,

to

and

his old

be the truth.

way The

prison of Bourdeaux, and his near escape from death, inspired

him with

so

months

terror, that the first

little

of recovered liberty were occupied in seeing through the press of Barthelemi Breton, at Rochelle, a

book which he proposed

to

dedicate to

among

queen-

the

mother and the Constable Montmorenci, and

little

in

which,

other matter, he did not scruple to utter with the

utmost freedom his opinions as a Huguenot.

had any

right to put his

power

make

to

mind

in fetters,

no

No man man had

Palissy afraid, and so the simple-hearted

Potter thought and

spoke what seemed to him the

necessary truth with tranquil honesty.

The book which

Palissy, after his rescue

from prison,

busied himself in seeing through the press, contained treatises

on four subjects, namely, agriculture, natural

history, the

plan of a delectable garden, to which in Saintonge,

and

which might serve as a

city

appended a histoiy of the troubles the plan of a fortified town,

is

of refuge in those times of trouble.

The

treatises,

con-

8

PALISSY THE POTTER.

taining part of the experience of his past years,

had

probably been written before his imprisonment, since is

only in his prefatory matter that he has

ence

collected, in

men

instruct

to the fields

entitled

men

The book

that event.

to

:

'

to

which they are

into

the

manure,

Trustworthy Receipt, by which

may

of France

is

to

avoid the enormous waste occasioned

by defective care of

their Treasures.

learn

Item.



to

may learn

Letters,

thus

is

all

the

augment Those who have acquired no

how

to all dwellers in the earth.

the

refer-

which one of the leading objects

A

knowledge of

made

it

multiply and

a Philosophy necessary

There

is

also contained

design of a Garden as delightful and useful in

invention as ever has been seen, with the design and

arrangement of a Fortified Town, the most impregnable of

which men have ever heard.'

*

This book was

published in a quarto form at Rochelle, by Barthelemi Breton, in the year 1563, being the year succeeding

* Recepte Veritable, par laquelle tous

France pourront apprendre Thresors.

Item.

Lettres, pourront apprendre

de la

augmenter leurs

jamais eu connoissance des

une Philosophic n6cessaire

a tous

Plus y est contenu Je dessein d'un autant delectable et d'utile invention qu'il en fut

les habitans

Jardin

a multiplier et

— Eux qui n'ont

Hommes

les

de la terre.

oncques vu, avec

le

dessein

Forteresse la plus imprenable

To make

the

title

more

et

ordonnance d'une Ville de

qu'homme

ait

jamais oui

attractive, a publisher

who

dire.'

issued the

works of Palissy, in 1636, Kobert Fouet, entitled them all, Le Moyen de devenir Riche,' and •How to grow Rich' 1 La Maniere v, ritable par laquelle/ &c. Several French writers, and Voltaire among them, knowing the works of their great Potter* only by this title, have leapt to the conclusion that he was an alchemist





V

PIERRE SANXAY.

which Palissy had been committed

that in

dun-

to the

geons of Bourdeaux.

The

prefatory matter in the

pages of Bernard's

first

book, his second book, according to his but the

mendatory verse.

modicum

usual

This verse

of recom-

of the usual quality.

is

F. B. to Bernard Palissy, "his singular and perfect

friend," and

to

deprives us of

of his name. before '

phrase,

of which there remains to us authentic

first

information, includes the

'

own

fill

all

us.

that

ascertain the other letters

all curiosity to

past ages,' he says,

'

praise.

Nature, mother of

heaped treasures has hidden under her

Man, when he was a

wings.

way

Pierre Sanxay, to a quick tune, dances

things, these

not

reader/ rhymes in a

book with a most lusty song of

the

Through

the

child, with

wonder could

Hercules, or Adam's nephews, built a pair

some Caryatides, bigness of her Pyramids we remember

of pillars; Greece has gotten credit for

Egypt the

for the

;

Carian sepulchre, and the

crowns Csesar with glory

come near painted,

the

;

ancient amphitheatre

but none of those things

Rustic Figulines

:

they are

and so ingeniously imagined.

well

so

The

before-

named trifling works, namely, the Straits of Gibraltar, the monuments of Greece, the Pyramids, and the Coliseum, required thousands of makers, but the best of them alone.

was not equal to a basin made by you, Palissy, The best of them has been bettered by elo-

quence, but yours are better than the powers of speech.

The

ancients counted seven wonders in the world

they seen yours,

it

would have ranked before the

;

had first.

Apelles painted better than Parrhasius, Parrhasius better

than Zeuxis; but you beat them

all.

The

high and

10

PALISSY THE POTTER.

thick rock pours no clearer water than that which

pour

a mimic

in

At

fall.'

Sanxay becomes luminous.

point Pierre

this

have quoted the matter of his praise thus

amusing like the

to

illustration of

when no book

days,

begins specify

what used

now

it,

to

far,

I

as an

be done in the old

could go abroad respectably unless,

ark of the covenant,

dance before

you

it

had some worthy men

singing songs of triumph.

But Pierre

be particular in his laudation, and to

to

some works of

Palissy which he holds to be

peculiarly superior to the Straits of Gibraltar and the

We

Pyramids.

by

erected

grotto

have

already referred to the rustic

Palissy

gardens of Ecouen, the

known

as the Fontaine

Montmorenci,

for

site

of which was afterwards

Madame.

There can be

doubt that the reference of Pierre Sanxay this

device.

was

entirely

the

in

is

little

now

to

The rock from which the cascade fell and literally made by Bernard, being a

grand specimen of

his painted pottery.

Rustic figulines

of frogs and fishes were placed in and about the water, lizards

were put upon the rock, and serpents scattered

The

in the grass.

allusion to Apelles

very possibly have been suggested

and Zeuxis to

the

may

mind of

Sanxay by a connection between the story of the grapes by which the birds were cheated, and the figure of a dog modelled and painted by Bernard, and Pierre

placed at his workshop-door, which had been invited out

many

belonging

times to jingle combat by perplexed dogs to the

Alluding

to

town.

such works, and probably with a direct

reference to the grotto at Ecouen, Pierre Sanxay goes

on

to

say to the author of the

'

Trustworthy Receipt

:

PIERRE SANXAY. '

A

made

Tarentine Archytas

made,

The

frogs in a

but you

infinite

but your

;

croak, for they are seraphim.

to

adventurous,

less

The

lustre

;

hideous chief took baleful serpents

to the

you, not

pond are not more

need

frogs do not

light.

the flying dove

argentine course, a troop of fishes swimming.*

in

Megsera

11

make

serpents things of

on the moss has not more native

lizard

than the lizard in that house which

is

The herbs and green meadows

famous by your new work. sweeter in the

but

;

fields,

made

look

not

are

not

more preciously enamelled, than those which grow under your hand. other herbage

;

Cold, moisture, and heat, wither

may

whatever

can take no harm.

I

will

be the weather, yours

be silent now, and only say

of a better treasure your rich

that

all

nature gives us

revelation in yourself.'

Therein we for in the is

book

may to

heartily agree with Pierre

which

no higher charm than

his verses are prefixed, there

that

which we derive from the In a book

pure, natural outpouring of Bernard's mind.

published fifteen years later

we

find the results of his

matured experience, and the Whole sum of

ments as a

naturalist

#

his time.

Bernard laboring onward, writing

It

would be easy

to

his acquire-

who had pushed forward

beyond the knowledge of find

Sanxay

make mimic

far

In this book

we

in the simplicity

fishes that

would

float

and dance about in water agitated by a cascade but the poet has probably fallen a victim to the illusion which Bernard tells us he wished to produce, by placing on the margin of his j

fountain enamelled fishes, similar in appearance to the living creatures that were set to swim about in the transparent water.

PALISSY THE POTTER.

12

of an unlettered man,

whom God

has gifted with a

quick and subtle genius, who, with the perfect mind of

a philosopher, and fearlessness of manly thought and speech,

The

is

naive and single-hearted as a

letters written after his

release,

child.

little

by

and

Palissy,

prefixed to his book, are addressed respectively to the

constable and to his son, to the queen-mother, and to

To

the reader.

the eldest son of the

constable, the

Marshal de Montmorenci, Governor of Paris, the letter

speaks

;

and

it

solemnly by Palissy

commences

with an idea repeated

which was,

in other writings,

parable of the Talents

world

placed

in the

powers

to account,

his

to see

ligious

tried the

feeling,

how he might

— was

turn

the touchstone

temper of

all his

by which This

industry.

his

aiding and strengthening

mind, forced Palissy

activity of

man

the duty of every

and do the utmost good of which

mind was capable

Bernard



to

his

He

never remained

pursue with energy

satisfied

recluse, but as a

;

at

with what was

He

done, for there was always more to do.

ever forward in his art

re-

natural

every path by which he thought he could arrive truth.

in-

machinery.

deed, the main-spring of his intellectual

The

first

labored

he studied nature, not as a

man ready

to

seek every opportunity

of turning his discoveries in science to the practical

advantage

of his race.

He saw

that

honest, local records, history would be

if

men

more

kept

correct,

and therefore he narrated the eveuts of his own town. He saw errors in Church discipline, which caused misery and

he saw.

strife,

Having

and he proclaimed honestly finally

acquired

and eliminated what he thought

to

all that

much knowledge, be some valuable

MARSHAL MONTMORENCI.

from the spreading of which over the

practical ideas,

country good would follow,

them

became his duty to spread was his first motive for the

it

he could, and that

if

13

publication of his book.

He

did not profess indifference to either praise or

His mind was too healthy

profit.

any to

just

and natural

be ashamed of

to

He would

desire.

be very glad

be entrusted with any profitable commission, and

without hint-dropping or circumlocution, whenever

it

occurred to him that he could be useful to somebody with profit to himself, he wrote what he thought in his

own

honest, unaffected manner.

For inscribing

Marshal de Mont-

his first letter to the

morenci, the eldest son of his great patron, Palissy

may have had stable

several motives.

suade the old differing

that

for him, as

perhaps he

often at

;

he had endeavored

to dis-

man from his coalition with the Guises not very much in age from Palissy, at the

same time

client,

son of the con-

represented less perfectly than his father the

faction of the triumvirate

and

The

he was liberal in temper, Palissy felt for Palissy. if

Ecouen, beyond the

a good deal of

addressing his

human

first letter to

they had met

relation of patron liking.

the

felt

Then

and

again,

by

younger Montmorenci,

Palissy could address the queen-mother afterwards with

greater delicacy.

He

shrank altogether from the

fiction

of a grateful letter to the king, nor did he wish, by writing to the queen-mother on his to thrust

first

page, coarsely

himself before the notice of the throne.

have placed his

epistle to the

queen

after that

To

which he

addressed to the elder Montmorenci, considering the great power and influence of the old constable, would

14

PALISSY THE POTTER.

have been a precedent that might have suggested

queen herself

the

distasteful

The

reflections.

less

prominent son of the marshal was, therefore, chosen stand in the

first

place

to

his dedicatory letters

humble duty

after that, he paid his

queen and

to the

These considerations would be strengthened

constable.

by

among

to

the dictates of self-interest,

which would suggest the

marshal as a very likely

man

whom

There was some hope

his father trusted.

to

trust the

he might give Bernard commission

to

workman

execute

that that

design for a delectable garden which the book con-

and

tained,

which the straightforward Potter

to

Again, the heir of the old con-

his practical attention.

stable

and of the

friendship

estate at

became

it

solicited

the

Ecouen was a man whose

interests

of Palissy to cul-

any honorable way. I have suggested a variety of possible motives, and more could

tivate, if

he could do so

be adduced

if

it

any way upon a

men

in

were worth while,

for

single motive only.

are asked what

was

few men act

Therefore,

an

their reason for

in

when

act, the

question ought almost invariably to be, what were their

reasons

?

and when

for their reply they give a single

motive, they often misrepresent even themselves, be-

cause they are unable if

to

reproduce in a few words,

they are able to recall, a complex process of the

mind. Palissy then

book

to

addressed

the

first

dedication of his

Monseigneur the Marshal de Montmorenci,

Knight of the Order of the King, Captain of Fifty Lances, Governor of Paris and the

Commencing

Isle

of France.

with the sense of religious responsibility,

he gravely expresses his feeling that

God

has com-

GOOD SECRETS.

men

mandecl

and

bread by the labor of their bodies,

to eat

them, in accordance with His

to

He

multiply the talents which

that they should

had committed

15

testa-

ment.

Which having

1

he says,

'

considered,

to hide in the

has pleased

Him

them to bring commandment,

I

have not been

ground those

to allot to

profit

I

me

;

willing,'

which

talents

it

therefore, to cause

and increase, according

have been desirous

His

to

produce them

to

before every one, and especially before your lordship,

knowing well

that

by you they would not be despised,

though they have, indeed, proceeded out of a poor treasury, being held

low condition

my

this

;

your

father, to

admirable rustic grotto of

new

and of

has pleased

it

do

his service, for the

in

abject,

notwithstanding, since

lord the constable,

employ me

to

by a person very

me

the honor

building of an

invention,

I

have not

feared to address to you a portion of the talents which I

have received from Him,

These certain

'

talents

he

all gifts

explain

to

abound.' are,

first,

good secrets' concerning agriculture, which '

to excite

towards the earth, and

virtue

whom

proceeds

he publishes, desiring

men

in

and

just

toil.'

He

to

good feeling in

make them

all

lovers of

also desires, in connection

with this subject, to point out certain errors in farming, the

amendment

enabling

men

of which would

'

be

the

means of

more than four million bushels France above what is customary,

to gather

of grain yearly in

provided that they be content to follow

my

advice,

which

you

will

when book.'

I

hope that they who are subject

to

do

they have received the information given in this

PALISSY THE POTTER.

16

Palissy then states that his book contains also original

He

plans of a garden and of a fortified town. '

have not put a picture of the said garden

I

book, because there are see

my

virtue

described in conversation

some

and been pronounced

parts of his great garden

in that, as in

He

fail to

will

you

employ me

to

many

other

proceeds to rebut

notion; and as to the picture, he adds, please

my

Palissy had often, probably,

of his schemes, a visionary.

may

and good

indigence, and the occupations of

have not permitted.'

idea,

in this

are not worthy to

and especially the enemies of

it,

wit; and also art,

many who

says,

this

'Whenever

it

in this affair, I will not

provide you quickly with a picture, and even

put the plan into execution,

you should

if

feel

inclined to have this done.'

He

then foresees objection that

against the reception of a

may

scheme of

a Potter, who has had no experience

'To

assault of towns. I

have begun for

enough of the their

mouths

my

this

I

in batteries or the

reply, that the

work which

lord the constable gives witness

which God has given me,

gift

from

fortification

for if they inquire into

;

probably arise

it,

to close

they will find



work has not before been seen. Item. Having made more ample inquiry, they will find that no man has taught me to understand the details of the above-named work. If, then, it has pleased God to that such a

distribute to will

deny

municate

me

of his

He has also me a portion

an

power

sufficient

to

of understanding

which

natural sense, than it

in the

is

who

artist in earth,

that

military art,

science in

gifts as

to

com-

in

the

acquired rather by nature, or

by practice

?

'

days of Palissy.)

(There was

'The

little

fortification

THE RUSTIC TONGUE.

17

of a town chiefly consists in tracings and lines, according to geometry

God,

I

am

and

;

is

it

known

well

not ignorant of these things.

that, I

thanks to

have assumed

you these arrangements, in obviate the detraction of some who might per-

the boldness to propose to

order to

suade you by saying that the thing

Bernard

quite convinced that his fortress

is

nable, and

ready

is

his invention.

It

may

able against

but the adoption of

have been open

impregtruth of

be observed in advance, that the

days

in those

it

is

upon the

to stake his life

impregnability of Bernard's fortress by any

The

impossible.

is

as

it,

we

is

means

avail-

perfectly demonstrable,

shall hereafter see,

would

upon other grounds.

to fatal objection

conclusion of the letter to the marshal well displays

the elegant

and nervous

style

which Palissy attained by

speaking the clear thoughts of a

man

of genius in the

words which they themselves suggested, without any for

strain

artificial

written with so ness,

my

you

that

much

'

If

these things are not

dexterity as

is

due

to

you

will do, seeing

your great-

me and this it is that I am not Greek,

be pleased to pardon

will

hope

polish.

;

nor Hebrew, nor poet, nor rhetorician, but a simple artisan, poorly

enough trained

in letters

:

this notwith-

standing, for such reasons, the thing in itself has not less value than if

eloquent.

than

lie

I

it

had been uttered by a

had rather speak

in rhetoric.

you

will receive this

as

have a desire that

I

The

truth in

Therefore,

my

man more

my rustic lord, I

tongue,

hope that

small work with as ready a will it

shall give

you

pleasure.'

clearness with which thoughts presented them-

selves to the lively apprehension of the Potter, led at all times to

VOL.

II.

speak them in words accurately 2

him

fitted to

PALISSY THE POTTER.

18 his

For

meaning.

reason the French written by

this

Palissy three centuries ago has very tiquated cast

;

The '

his

of an an-

mind, appears

his language, like his

have marched forward out of

little

own

to

time.

next epistle, addressed by the liberated Potter

To my

very dear and honored lady, Madame, the

Queen-Mother,' relates how, when he had been delivered from the hands of his cruel enemies 1

means and

favor, at the request of

ble/ he reflected that to

my lord

by her

the consta-

had been ungrateful

it

in

imprison him for admonishing them to their

And

advantage.

men own

then, considering whether there might

not be in himself also

some

of ingratitude, he

spirit

remembered

the favor of the queen, 'which seeing, I

found that

would be

it

me

in

a great ingratitude

were not regardful of such boon. indigence

myself

Nevertheless,

has not permitted that

into

your own presence

boon, which

is

make.'

not at

It is

the smallest

perous time of his

all life

to

I

should transport

thank you for such

recompense

Palissy

was

who does

light of past experience, is

who always increase of

is

I

could

The

art

of

not labor by the

very costly.

The much

spoiling

material

a frequent accident; and Palissy,

labored forward into skill,

that

rich.

of elaborate work in the furnace, loss of labor,

my

probable that in the most pros-

pottery, especially to one

and time and

if I

unknown

regions for

was of course always paying

for his

knowledge by mishaps attendant on his spirit of advenIf he had hoarded any little store, it would have ture. been consumed during his imprisonment, and the last coins of it were probably expended in the repair of

damage

that

had been done

to his

workshop by

his

THE PATRONAGE OF KINGS. enemies.

The expense

travelling

upon

of publishing his book, and

business

that

19

between Saintes and

Rochelle, would further burden him

he might well,

;

therefore, plead indigence as his apology for not in-

curring the expense of an appearance at the court.

He

offered to the queen, however, the secrets contained

in his book.

My

'

pride as elevates



'

he says, not without so much

littleness/

my

littleness

dedicating

my

him

above the host of sycophants

far

has not dared to take the liberty of

work

I

been no new thing.

Madame,

had done

if

:

I

have hope that

to

time, because of

my

make very

and

would have

it

there never

was a time

this

work

be more

will

At

littleness,

I

king.'

well understood by his sovereign prince

Having put

in

this

affectation of

independence

sion of a feeling which, in our artists

share with

there never their

good word

him

own

in

for

that

There

country, at any rate,

to the present

day

:

'

Madame,

was a time when good inventions received

reward from kings.'

him

the

Bernard's expres-

That was a plain

Palissy does not affect to disdain patronage. to

faithful

hope he has found means

I

marshal, Palissy propounds an idea for himself.

was no

the

have dedicated

Monseigneur de Montmorenci, good and

servant of the king, which to

so,

any other person.

useful to the king than to

it

sake of

this for the

had been

it

that

inventions received their reward from kings;

nevertheless,

same

knowing well

king,

the

to

some would say that being recompensed

when good

just

he should be glad

one of the queen's gardens

;

to

that

truth, but It

occurs

work in being a natural and

have a

little

honest object of desire, Bernard has no false delicacy

20

PALISSY THE POTTER. expressing

in

book/ he

much and

the queen,

tells

I

shall not fail to

you should

if

do things that no other

this

to assist

man

do you

to

employ myself about

feel inclination to

The works from

day.'

be able

will

command me

please you to

if it shall

And

which

'

in

your garden of Chenonceaux;

in the building of

service therein, ft.

There are things written

it.

do

this, I will

has done up to the present

his furnace

being unique in

promise would have been

their character, of course that

extremely easy of fulfilment. In

his

Palissy

epistle

first

to

great

his

patron, the

excuses himself for not having rendered

thanks at the time

when he was drawn

hands of

his mortal

and capital enemies.

he says,

'

I

my

occupation of

that the

work, together with

my

'

out of the

You know/

time upon your

indigence, have not permitted

doubt whether you would have found

I

it.

constable,

had

quitted

your work

to

good,

it

if

bring you large thanks.'

Palissy then narrates to the constable briefly the cause

and manner of ance

at Saintes

accounts for his continu-

during the heat of the contention, and

enemies possessed the town

after his

saying,

He

his arrest.

'I

into their

should have taken good heed

sanguinary hands, had

hoped they would have regard duty

for their

pensier, to

me

to

who gave me a

or against

my

it

for

of,

you

fall

not been that

I

your work, and de

Mont-

or undertake anything against

house

bring your work

all

by

safeguard, forbidding them

;

well knowing that no to

completion

After telling the tale briefly, he adds: to

not to

Monseigneur the Duke

take cognizance

could

in triumph,

these things, in order that

'I

but

man

myself.'

have written

you might not

EDUCATION OF LABORERS. be of opinion that

I

21

had been imprisoned as a thief

or murderer.'

Addressing in the

him

place the reader, he prays to

last

a friendly manner,

in

'

Be

not so indolent or rash

as to content yourself with the reading of the beginning

away from

or a part thereof; but, in order to carry

some

it

take pains to read the whole, without having

fruit,

regard to the littleness and

abject condition of the

author, nor yet to his language, rustic and ill-adorned,

assuring yourself that you will find nothing in this writing which

Applying presently reader

'

his

main

where

St.

is

in the

his

Holy

Paul says, that each one,

according as he has received

should distribute

gifts,

thereof to others,' he urges upon

him

structing his unlettered

'that they

made

less.'

and praying

idea,

mind a passage which

to call to

Scripture, there

more or

not of profit to you,

is

laborers,

the duty of in-

may

be

carefully to study in natural philosophy, accord-

ing to

my

counsel.'

.The instruction of agricultural

laborers in natural philosophy

enough even

speculative Palissy

was

practical. distribute

right; If

to

veiy quickly

his

farmers their

in

notion

had

servants,

in the scale of

is

an idea that sounds present

the

But

day.

was clear-sighted and gifts of knowledge to they

could

intellect,

raise

them

and there

no knowledge so easy of acquisition, and so

is

interest-

ing to unlettered men, as plain and useful information

on the meaning of the processes of nature.

If

know

in

laborers were taught to their daily labor, their

the

reason that

and the ways of nature which

occupation to

assist,

more happily and blunder

is it

is

they would not only work less,

but would contribute

PALISSY THE POTTER.

22

some independent ways

in

to the

advance of agricul-

ture. '

Especially,' says Bernard,

'

let that secret

cept which concerns manure-heaps, that this

have put into

I

made manifest

book, be divulged and

and pre-

to

them; and

that also,' he adds, allowing for the slow perceptions of

the ignorant, it

man

no

be needed,

if

on

till

they hold

Since so

great the

it is,

'

a kind of earth

which he had seen used as manure

'

in

and some other regions of

certain parts of Gascony,

France.'

This subject he promises

treat of in

a third book,

if I

'

in

profit

they would accept

this subject

Palissy then mentions

counsel.'

called marl,'

how

could estimate

France would be,

my

may

so long as

esteem as the thing merits.

in as high

that

'

and

to investigate

see that

my

writings are

not despised, and that they are put in execution.'

After again defending, as quite practicable, his ideas

garden and the

for the

reader thus continues ingratitude in restrain

:

'

I

desire

I

Bernard's epistle to the

much caused me to

have also found so

persons, that this has

myself from too great

time, the incite

many

fortress,

liberality

same

at the

;

have toward the public good

me some day

to take

will

an opportunity of making

the picture of the said garden, according to the tenor

and design written

beg of the occupied

them not

me

I

would

like to

nobility of France, that after I shall

my

time

to return

ecclesiastics of this to get

But

in this book.

to

do them service,

me

evil for

it

please

will

good, as the

have

Roman

town have done, who have desired

hung, for having sought on their behalf the

greatest good that could accrue to them,

having wished

to

incite

them

to

feed

which their

is,

for

flocks,

EVIL FOR GOOD.

23

commandment. And no man can say but because I that ever I have done them any wrong urged upon them their perdition, according to the eighteenth of the Apocalypse, seeking thus to amend them, and because many times also, I had shown them following God's

;

a text written in the Prophet Jeremiah, where he says, " Woe unto you, pastors, who drink the milk and wear the wool, and leave tains

will

I

!

my sheep

upon the moun-

scattered

demand them again of your hands;"

they, seeing such a thing, instead of amending, har-

dened themselves, and banded against the

seems late

The

light.'

have regarded

to

themselves together

simple, earnest Potter,

who

as a plain duty to expostu-

it

with the well-dined ecclesiastics of his town, to

urge upon them their perdition, and awaken them, possible, with the

woe

solemn note of

texts that

if

pronounce

against unfaithful pastors, speaks half in real, half

in ironical surprise at the return he intentions.

reader,

'I

for all his

never should have thought,' he

that for that cause they

'

had

take occasion to put

me

tells his

would have wished

God

to death.

have done

that for the evil they

good

is

me

to

my

to

witness,

they had no

other occasion than the above named.' Finally, Bernard

culture as

honored

may

; '

'

a just

commends toil,

to all his

and worthy

and again, urges

to

his desire

'

readers agri-

be prized and that the simple

be instructed by the wise, in order that

none of us be rebuked talents in the earth.'

at the last

With

always predominant in his in the

day

this last

for

having hidden

thought

own mind

we may

— a thought

— couched

now

most solemn form of adjuration, Palissy ends as

he began his series of prefatory

letters.

24

PALISSY THE POTTER.

CHAPTER

II.

CONTENTS OF THE BOOK.

The

treatises included in the

by Bernard

Palissy, the

with confidence as

year

1563,

his,

second book published

that

first

we

are able to receive

having been published

when Bernard was

fifty-four

in the

years old,

contain the mature expression of his character.

maturity of his knowledge

is

ings; in this second book

we

subsequent attainments, and

work, that

we

shall find the

the claims of Palissy to rank

it

expressed in later writ-

him on the road

find is

and

full

acting

to

in treating of his last

most

fit

among

place to consider

the

men who have

won spurs upon the field of science. The second book is chiefly interesting plete and lively way in which it makes a the entire

The

for the

com-

revelation of

mind of the writer. It is essentially original, of the charm conveyed by brilliant genius

on

its

own

impulses,

in

independence of

all

schoolmen, perfectly regardless of the prepossessions

and the prejudices of the world.

It

presents the picture

of a free mind and nimble fancy, working and playing

on

their

own

behalf three centuries ago, and pushing

CHARACTER OF THE BOOK. their

own wholesome which they

roots

among

25

the corruption of the

in

the

woods with exquisite appreciation of

of Nature, searching

among her

and demonstrates how they

may

all

secrets, at

ways of workers

applies his study to the

among

Bernard, wandering

lived.

soil

beauties

one time

in the fields,

increase their substance

by avoiding certain errors at another time he contrasts the peace of woods and meadows with the jar of human ;

and dwells with playful

strife,

satire

on the

with stern denunciation on the crimes of his

The

follies,

own

or

time.

intimate union in his writings between a love of

nature and a

spirit

of unaffected piety

;

the cheerful-

ness of Bernard's piety as a pervading feature of his disposition, not incompatible, in his case, with the rigid

sense of virtue and of discipline proper to a Huguenot,

who worshipped

as he would in spite of the severest

penalties,

are characters that

When

tells

he

Saintes, or

lie

upon the surface.

Reformed Church of comments elsewhere, as he always comthe story of the

ments, freely on the great religious questions of the day,

it

should be observed, that however bluntly and

sternly he

may

upbraid the ecclesiastics, he nowhere

them about dogmas of theology.

quarrels with

does not seem

to

care

much whether

He

they be good

theologians or not, but he desires that they shall be

good Christians only.

and take care

for the

He

would have them

poor

;

to

preach

but he complains that

they grow fat upon the substance of the people, and neglect the fulfilment of their charge.

He

complains

of avarice that cuts the forests down, of pride, contentiousness,

Church of

and acts and passions

Christ.

There can be

that disgrace the

little

doubt that he

PALISSY THE POTTER.

26 adhered

whole body of Calvinistic

the

to

any

but he does not trouble us with

which we can

doctrine,

from

syllable,

infer that he possessed a theologic pass-

by Calvin, Beza, or any other ambassador of Heaven, for insuring his safe transit From the works of over the confines of this world.

port properly filled up

we only

Palissy

learn that

reverently acquainted

labored to apply

its

tion of his daily

with

he was thoroughly and the

Bible,

and

that

he

precepts practically to the regula-

life.

His reverence of Nature, and

that inexpressible perception of the goodness equalling

the

wisdom of

the Creator,

Nature teaches

to

which

is

the best lesson that

her simple-hearted scholars, most

effectually let the sunshine into Palissy's religion.

Palissy wrote without a thought

tences

of polished sen-

he never used his pen unless he had

;

in his

mind some matter worth inditing; and against his detractors he was not afraid to call to witness the philosophers, and most cultivated minds of France men who live well, full of virtue and good manners, who, I know, will hold my work in their esteem, '



though

be written in a language

it

polished

and

;

know very

if

they meet with a

how

well

to allow for the

rough and

ill-

they will

fault,

condition of the

author/

The that

polish wanting in the

which

in the

works of Palissy

is

chiefly

present day would have been fur-

him by his printer. He poured out I have thoughts more freely than his full stops. nished

to

untouched Palissy' s punctuation, his

writings

volumes

;

as

and

have been

for

my own

in

his left

such extracts from

included

in

the

part, I like his

present

works the

CHARACTER OF THE BOOK.

27

which the words

better for the quaint vivacity with

follow each other, while the busy Potter quite forgets

measure the thoughts as they come out of

to

against the wind that

is

demanded

his brain,

for their utterance.

Vivacity of mind prompted Bernard

plan

to

all

his

writings in the form of dialogues, in which he represents as speakers

His vivacity, his

strength

his

Theory and Practice, or Experiment. clear and philosophic spirit of inquiry,

of purpose, and

communicated

to his

the

and

purity

grace

mind by long communion with

nature and true wholesome piety, utter themselves in the

works of Palissy, and reveal the character of the

many

writer,

cumstances of his

He

hides,

affects

no

him and

false

love

without a trace

modesty, but he causes us

him by

of egotism. pride,

he

to delight in

the absence of all effort to acquire

His narrative of

sufferings while he is

life,

of the cir-

indeed, no sense of honorable

our admiration.

enamel,

many

of his thoughts, and

was laboring

his

struggles

in vain for the

and

white

one of the best pieces, perhaps the best piece

of naive writing to be found in the whole range of

modern

literature.

played during those

The

fortitude

efforts, is

which Palissy

even

less to be

dis-

admired

than the simplicity with which they are related.

This narrative of struggle

is

included, not in the

second, but in the last of Bernard's books.

In the

Appendix to these volumes it is prefixed to a selection from the works of Palissy, designed to illustrate his life and character, in which selection, except some extracts from a short succeeding paper on The Pot'

ter's

the

'

Clay,' the specimens have all

been taken from

Trustworthy Receipt,' the book published

in

1563,

PALISSY THE POTTER.

28 with which

this

story

have been quoted

ac-

again, with the original context,

Appendix,

outline of

it;

will

it

be

preceding

in

and many portions so quoted

chapters,

the

become

to

Since, however, portions of the book neces-

quainted.

sary to

our present business

is

it

will

be read

where they occur

now

sufficient

and whenever any extended

to

an

give

details

in

may

be given in the words of Palissy, they will be such as are not elsewhere to be found included in these

volumes.

The

and principal

first

by Palissy

treatise in the

constable and queen-regent,

to the

garden, which he says had been suggested

who were

the voice of certain virgins,

groves,

certain

and

Beginning at

Psalm.

sang this

the

cultivation of the

who

arts,

upon

point, the

it

his

him by

to

seated under

Hundred-and-Fourth

lightly over the troubles of the time,

of a place of refuge, until

is

by the proposition of

Palissy begins

agriculture.

book dedicated

dialogue travels

and the necessity

dwells upon the defective

and chiefly agriculture.

Ber-

wisdom of his that all folly, sanctioned by custom, ancestors, knows by no means is accepted for a law and virtue,' but he nard,

is

no special believer

in the

'

'

desires to be an imitator of his predecessors, except in

as far as they have done well, according to the ordi-

nances of God.'

In agriculture he says what

unhappily, to this day in

men who station

:

many

are born, as Palissy



'

Each

losophy, and

all

was

parts

is

true,

of France, of

born, in a peasant's

any

phi-

jog always at the accustomed

trot,

labors on the soil without

following the footsteps of their predecessors, without

considering the nature or the prime causes of agricul-

29

AGRICULTURAL CHEMISTRY. Being cried out upon for the belief

ture/

would be the better

for

some philosophy,

phatically reiterates his position,

'

one day would give the

Palissy

ought

it

which two give

fruit

way that it is now cultivated daily.' To illustrate and enliven his case, he

to be,

in the

relates

His opponent then quotes Scripture

ancient fable.

him

em-

Dares well affirm,

were cultivated as

too, that if the earth

that laborers

against vain

philosophies,

and desires

to

an to

know

what kind of philosophy can serve a husbandman. Bernard disposes of the Scripture ceeds

to give

some

text,

practical explanation of the

and waters, and such

the philosophy of manure,

would not

why

when they rains.

discredit

He

left their

passes on to explain

and points

out, in

language

any modern chemist, the reason

farmers in France

all

He

things.

wasted their own goods

manure-heaps

at the

mercy

common enough now,

that time exclusively the product of his

and research.

own

His querist declares that for a hundred

muck-heaps

;

common

in plants, not

salts that It is

salt,

manuring of a to these

France

to

that

contained

is

in restoring

soil consists

facts,

universal habit of allowing the

exposure,

salt

but salts of divers kinds,

have been removed from

by attention

is salt

Palissy therefore proceeds to convince

him, by a detail of experiments, that

that the

but at

reflection

years' preaching he would not believe that there

and

of the

talks philosophically about salts, preaching

an agricultural doctrine

in

need

the study of soils,

of natural philosophy in farming,

that

and then pro-

it

by

vegetation.

and ceasing from the

manure

Palissy proposed

to

multiply their treasures.

to

be

spoilt

by

men

of

all

the

To

increase the

30

PALISSY THE POTTER.

productiveness of the

soil,

and

to

cheapen, accordingly,

produce, would have been to increase the wealth of

its

every Frenchman. refers in the

It

is

part of the

first

Palissy

to this doctrine that

of his book.

title

Since he advises farmers to keep their manure from

he thinks

spoiling,

them by reception, accom-

proper also to

it

suggesting the plan of a tank for

panied by such minute practical

its

assist

details,

founded on a

very sound philosophy, as will preserve them from possibilities

of error.

Having explained with great clearness proceeds to

Palissy next

doctrine,

all

damage done by

this

important

comment on

the

the laborers to trees through careless-

This

ness in wood-cutting.

'

murder upon

trees

'

he

combats warmly, and teaches the necessity of cutting such a manner as

living plants in

bruise or fracture.

The

to leave

entire essay will be found in

the Appendix,* with the omission of topics.

One of these

is

on them no

its

two remaining

a brief discussion of the cause

of rottenness within the heart of trees, and certain

appearances within the texture of wood, which are has

been

retained in hollows formed within the branches.

The

ascribed to

other topic

the

is

percolation of water that

a more detailed discussion of the

season for wood-cutting.

Palissy properly points out

that both the trees are less injured

better

when

it

is

fit

and the wood

lopped during the winter.

He

is

also

very accurately describes the exhaustion of the

re-

sources of a plant by the act of flowering and bearing fruit; *

but at a time

Where

is it

when

the

translated under the

Rich in Farming.'

world knew nothing title

of

'

How

to

Grow

NUTRITION OF TREES.

31

whatever about vegetable physiology, and there was

need of a microscope for the perception of the reasoning of Palissy

always sensible, could

While

not, of course,

stance of a tree

is

drawn by

and consists largely of

undue importance

truths,

he saw, though

facts

always be correct.

and correctly teaching

distinctly

the south

upon the

its

that the

sub-

roots out of the soil,

its

Palissy errs in ascribing

salts,

imbibition of moisture from

to the

and west winds as opposed

to the

dry cold

winds from the north.

The second statement

the

Bernard's book

treatise in

of certain

opinions to which he had

attained on natural history.

In this essay he

recurring to his proposition, that in herbs, and plants, there

was

due

to the

which cause them

The shape

air

and being

and

rain,

of mountains

is

return into the state of

in the state of earth, are

but will produce thorns or thistles

The

kinds of trees,

shape of the rocks beneath, which, being

decomposed by earth,

all

begms by

he adds now, that

salt;

there are salts in stones and metals, to retain the solid form.

devoted to

is

valleys,

being washed

if

never

idle,

no grain be sown.

by rains and made too

moist, lose a portion of their salts,

which being more

concentrated on the high lands, there produce stronger trees

and

fruit,

he says, depends upon the

that

is

fruits

For the savor of a

of better savor.

salts within

it,

and

a doctrine fully in accordance with the science

of the present day. Palissy then directs his disputant to take a note of

the crumbling of old walls, but

is

met promptly by a

violent antagonism to his theory of the constant for-

mation of new rocks, and disintegration of the surface

32

PALISSY THE POTTER.

He

of the rocks already formed.

beginning

God made heaven and

told that in the

is

earth

he made also

;

the stones, and none therefore have since been

This objection was no

To

made.

one three centuries ago.

idle

the eyes of the orthodox these doctrines of Palissy

concerning stones would appear utterly abominable and

The reply of Palissy to the dogmatist is very beautiful I know well that it is written in the Book of Genesis that God created all things in six days, and but for all that, God did that he rested on the seventh

profane.

:

'

;

not create these things to leave them idle

each performs

ment are

duty according

its

The

received from God.

it

not idle

the sea

;

and labors

another,

the earth likewise

is

stars

wanders from

to

bring forth

never

idle

command-

the

to

therefore

;

and planets

one

place

profitable things

that

;

not in one shape, she will reproduce

And

that

is

why you have

the earth, in order that the earth the

tensive

was

may

which she gave.'

substance

the view of nature to

risen since he

was a

child at play

it



in another.

manure-heaps

to take

;

which decays

naturally in her she renews, she forms over again if

to

to

receive again

So clear and exwhich Palissy had

among

the glass-

workers.

He

then speaks of the changes that take place be-

neath the surface of the earth



the formation of coal,

of minerals, the kindling under the earth of

some compression. rising

'

He

fire

'

by

speaks of earthquakes, of the

and sinking of mountains, as evidences of a

constant change. ed, he says,

*

it

If stones

would be

were not continually form-

difficult to find at this

horseload of them in a whole kingdom

; '

day a

and he points

THE GROWTH OF STONES.

33

by man, by

out the daily waste of stone

and

frost,

other causes.

Being required are being at

some

further proof that stones

times formed as well as wasted, he

all

how he had been

relates first

to give

surprised

when he

time found shells encrusted in a mass of stone,

themselves being converted into stone.

much

were

shells of fish that

some former dwellers on l

having decayed,

after

and reduced

the spot,

had been eaten by

and

that the shells

substance and property of the

the

made

of the said shells

earth,

This,

pondering, he then accounted for by the opinion

that they

salt

for the

attraction of the adjacent

however,

into stone with itself;

it

because the said shells retained more

salt in

themselves

than they gave to the earth, they congealed with a congelation

much

Afterwards, he had been

harder.'

puzzled by certain stones embedded in rock,

were made nites,

named

ram's horn

in the fashion of a

in fact

Pierre



until

Guoy,

'

it

'

and

which

— ammo-

happened one day

citizen

*

that

sheriff of this

one

town of

Xaintes, found in his farm one of the said stones which

was half open, and had certain dentations which

fitted

admirably one into the other; and because the said

Guoy knew

me

that

I

was curious

in

such things, he made

a present of the said stone, whereat

rejoiced

;

and from

that time

I

I

was greatly

understood that the said

stone had formerly been a shell of a fish,

we

see no more.'

Then he

describes

which

fish

how he was

once seeking shells upon the shore of Olleron, probably as models to be used in ornamental pottery, and had

engaged a score of women and children to aid him in searching on the rocks; there were brought to him a VOL.

II.

3

34

PALISSY THE POTTER.

number of

which we know, from

fishes,

minute

his

under the class of Fishes, but

description, not exactly

of Radiata, as sea-urchins.

'

Now, some time

after-

was an advocate, a famous man, and lover of letters and arts, who, in disputing of some art, showed me two shells quite similar in form to the said urchin-shells, but which were quite

wards/ he says,

massive

;

'

there

and the said advocate, named Babaud, main-

tained that the said stones had been carved by the

hand of some workman, and was

when were

when

astonished

quite

maintained against him that the said stones

I

natural,

and Babaud found

it

Palissy proceeded to explain

had been moulded

still

more strange

how such

stones

into shells.

Palissy having in this

way

given evidence that

stones were not created in the beginning as they exist,

all

now

proceeds to discuss the veins of rocks and their

He

cleavage.

stratified stone

ascribes the conversion of earth into

upon a large scale

percolation of water, which saturated

some

by

parts,

He

viscous earth.

pressure and the

becomes as

more and more with

salts.

check given

faults in the strata to the tion, in

to

it

He

descends ascribes

to the percola-

the intervention of a piece of

accounts for the existence of white

black earth by the bleaching power which

stone

in

some

salts

possess.

In

Palissy falls behind the

this

modern

but although incorrect, he the philosophy of his

part

own

is

of his philosophy

position of geology

decidedly in advance of

time, which in such matters

rested satisfied with pious absence of inquiry.

The passage to the subject

of water through rocks brings Palissy

of springs, of which he proceeds next to

PETRIFIED WOOD.

SALTS

detail the theory with perfect

which he stood alone Returning then proceeds

to

in

the subject of salts

in a cavern,

about straw by congelation. this

with the flinty

theory of

France as the discoverer.

and

way by

He

salt.

he

flints,

and

a Grand Vicar of Tours

and Abbot of Turpenay had shown him be formed in

—a

the subject of crystallization,

to discuss

to relate "how,

accuracy

35

He

formed

flints

believes all

to

flints

deposit from water charged

had found

flints

with holes

pierced through them, and by these has been confirmed in his theory,

continued

to

because they showed that the water had

run through while the

flint

was forming.

After further illustrating his theory of the deposit of stone from water, Palissy proceeds to speak of petrified

wood, and relates how a piece of such wood, obtained at court

by La Mothe Fenelon, was given

the said

Fenelon was passing through Saintes;

like

him as

to



he,

most other people who became acquainted with

the philosophic Potter,

'

knowing,' says Bernard,

*

in

was very curious about such things.' Palissy proceeds to account by his theory for the petrification of this wood in the swamp from which it had been taken, and adds, You see, thus, how very good truth that

I

*

Nature no sooner

suffers destruction

by one

than she at once resumes work with another that

which

I

have

told

you throughout,

and other elements are never

principle, ;

which

is

that the earth

idle.'

Bernard then charges against his adversary another argument in further maintenance of his opinion that stones are undergoing constant reproduction as well

as constant waste. bodies,

Stones, he says,

and are found

to

grow

in

human

be produced in animals.

In

PALISSY THE POTTER.

36

proof of his assertion that the moisture of the air

an

is

decay of stone, he speaks

active agent in producing the

of the decay which takes place on the outside of the

and Brittany.

glass vessels in the churches of Poitou

Glass was, at that time,

ed than

it is

of Palissy,

we

own day

our

in

much

read, as a

less perfectly

for long after the period

;

common

thing, of the action of

an acid wine upon the wine-bottles.

This decompo-

properly ascribed to action on the

sition Palissy

contained in the glass

say that the

compound-



the alkali.

moon has done

'

salt

The glass-makers

but they will pardon

this,

me.

by a story of a potter, further illuschange of form which certain substances

Palissy then, trates

the

may undergo when

salts are

added

to

them.

He

then

proceeds to discuss the formation of precious stones,

and accounts

for their

theory of certain

salts

existence

on

to

From a

slight

in percolating

through

mention of metals he passes

the absurd use of gold as a potable metal in

medicine by the doctors. to

by the same

deposited from water, which

had become charged with them the earth.

still

pay a grateful

faculty,

in

At

tribute

to

same time, he pauses some members of the

the

words which rather

militate

against

the

theory that Palissy was author of the Dissertation that

has been ascribed to him as his not spoken

ill

to

first

you/ he says,

'

work.

'

I

have

of the doctors

;

I

some of attached, and

should be very sorry to do so, for there are

them

in this

particularly

town to

to

whom

I

am

M. PAmoureux, who has given me

assistance with his worldly goods his art.'

greatly

and with the labor of

37

GOLD.

With a employed treatise

to

defend the

use

of

potable

upon Natural History concludes.

to us the point in

Palissy had nature.

of arguments against the

series

by

advance of

this

his

It

theories

gold,

the

represents

own age up

to

which

time attained in his researches into

38

PALISSY THE POTTER.

CHAPTER

III.

FURTHER CONTENTS OF THE BOOK THE FORTRESS.

The

of

third

four

the

THE GARDEN AND

treatises

included

second work of Bernard Palissy displays a delectable garden.

Still

the

in

his plan for

using his accustomed form

of dialogue, he states that he should like to form a

garden after his own heart, in some place where there are

He

hills.

may

be

able

desires a hilly place, in order that he to

lead

springs

down from

the

high

ground, to flow in a rivulet about his garden in the

There are

valley.

in

France, he says, more than

four thousand noble houses, situated near spots con-

venient for his purpose

;

such spots being especially

abundant along the course of the Loire, the Gironde, the Garonne, the Lot, the Tar,

and almost

all

the other

rivers. 6

Question.

me, then, how you propose

Tell

ornament your garden, the site '

seem

you

shall

have bought

?

Answer.

ture of

after

to

my

In the

first

place, I will

mark

the quadra-

garden of such length and breadth as

requisite,

and

I

will

make

may

the said quadrature in

THE DELECTABLE GARDEN.

39

bounded by mountains, highlands, or rocks, on the sides of the north wind and the west wind, in order that the said mountains, highlands, and

some

plain that

rocks,

may

serve

shall tell you.

of

my

I

it it

me

in the things of

which

presently

I

will take care also to fix the situation

garden below some spring of water issuing from

the said rocks,

done,

is

make my

will

I

may be, may have

and coming from a high place said quadrature

build

my

garden

I

will

a

meadow below

it,

sometimes from the said garden

a spot where

in

so that one

may

meadow

pass

and

;

And

reasons which shall be hereafter adduced.

this for

that

but wherever

:

into the

and

;

having thus made good the situation of the garden, will

proceed then

There

shall be

said garden,

divide

to

it

into four equal parts.

a great walk formed like a cross

and

at the

I

in the

four ends of the said cross

there shall be at each end a cabinet, and in the centre

of the garden and the cross there shall be an amphitheatre, such as I will presently describe.

At

the four

corners of the said garden there shall be in each a cabinet,

which are

in

number

eight cabinets and an

amphitheatre that will be erected in the garden

;

but

you must understand

that all the eight cabinets will be

differently garnished,

and of such contrivance as hath

never yet been seen or talked

The stream manner about

of water the

is

of.'

to

be conducted in such

garden that

it

shall

pass through

each of the eight cabinets, and being retained in various proportions, escape

more than a hundred

from

little jets.

it

in

each

again through

Having explained

this

matter, Palissy proceeds to describe the plan of each

of the proposed cabinets in detail.

He

begins with the

40

PALISSY THE POTTER.

That

cabinets at the four corners.

north adjoins the rock, and

unhewn

crusted externally with that persons descending

corner of the

be built of bricks,

to

is

at the

rock, and so contrived

may walk upon

from above

its

roof without knowing that they stand upon a building.

On

the roof are to be planted fruits, and such herbs as

yield seeds grateful to song-birds, in order that they

may

be enticed to

make

a place of their

that cabinet

resort.

The water wall,

to

is

carried between the rockwork and the

issue again

from the

The

rockwork as a natural spring. to

clefts

between the

cabinet inside

is

be smooth, with windows looking southward, and

Between each two seats there is to be a column on a pedestal, and having capitals above, with an architrave, frieze, and cornice running round the cabinet. Over the whole surface of the wall.

seats built

into

the interior

when

it is

built there are to

device colored enamels, and then a

be

fire

laid in artful

being

made

within the cabinet, the enamels are to be burnt that the

whole

of one piece

interior of this cabinet will

polished

letters,

the inscription



'

God

man with whom wisdom The second cabinet, in

that

northern

side,

externally to

facing

the

is

so

to

be

and beautifully

as a mirror,

colored; around the frieze there

appear

;

to run, in antique

hath pleasure only in

dwelleth.'

next corner on

the

south,

is

to

the

be built also

resemble the rock against which

it

is

placed, and fruits and herbs are to be planted over

it,

and water-springs

to issue

bricks, but in the interior to be not

from

it.

It is

to

be built of

between the seats there are

columns, but grotesque figures fashioned out

THE FOUR CORNER CABINETS.

41

of brick, supporting architrave, and frieze, and cornice.

And

the grotesque figures are to be quaintly painted in

enamel, and the whole interior of the cabinet enamelled, and around the frieze there antique letters, this inscription is



'

The

is

to

be

to run,

in

is

fear of the

Lord

the beginning of wisdom.'

The

on one of the southern corners

third cabinet,

meadow,

adjacent to the other two, but

is

interior is to be

its

posed irregularly, as though

hewn

out of the rock

which serve as surface

to

is

resemble externally the

to

seats,

it

formed of bricks

were a cavern rudely

and there are

;

dis-

and a rude

be cavities

to

disposition of the

hewn

suggest a frieze, carelessly

;

the

be covered with a white enamel, and after-

whole

is

wards

lightly

to

and delicately painted, and around the

frieze there is to run, in antique letters, this inscription 1

Wisdom

make her dwelling

not

will

body, nor in the soul that

The

is

disposed to

the sinful

in

evil.

,

fourth cabinet, in the south-western angle, ad-

joining the mountain on the west, covered with earth

and

plants,

water flows,

and resembling natural rock from which is

in

its

The cavern is human labor. It is last.

projections from parts ready to

its

fall.

interior to be

to present in its to

shape no idea of

be tortuous, and

roof as that Its

ruder than the

still

it

windows,

shall

to

have such

some windows of

appear

like the

in

the other three cabinets, are to be irregular in shape. Its interior is to

and

jasper,

be enamelled with veins of chalcedony

and strange ideas and figures growing and

vanishing from floor to roof.

And though

there will

be no frieze, yet over some part of the cavern there

is

PALISSY THE POTTER.

42 run

to

inscription

this



'

Without wisdom

is

it

not

possible to please God.'

Palissy next details his plan for the four cabinets,

which are

be at each end of the walks, traversing

to

middle of the garden

the

They

are

to

all

The

length and breadth.

its

be formed of foliage, but under the

branches which shade '

in

each there

rock, then/ says Palissy,

first

'

be a rock.

to

is

which

will

be in

modelled, baked, and enamelled after

made of earth the manner of

many

strange colors,

on the north,

cabinet

the

shall

a tortuous and rugged rock, of

such as

I

am now making

be

constable, not exactly according to the

because '

work

this

is

my

lord the

same

design,

for the grotto of

not of the

same

intention.

Note, then, that at the base and foot of the rock

there will be a natural trench or receptacle for water,

which

be equal in length to the said rock.

will

this

cause

the

said trench,

I

make

will

projections on

upon which projection

several frogs, tortoises,

number of

all

my

crabs,

lobsters,

I

For

rock, along will

place

and a great

kinds of shells, the better to imitate the

Also, there will be several branches of coral,

rock.

roots will be at the

whereof the

order that the said corals

foot of the

may have

rock, in

the appearance of

having grown within the said trench. '

A

Item,

little

higher on the said rock, there will

and concavities, on which there will be some serpents, aspics, and vipers, which will be couched and twisted on the said projections, and within

be several

the clefts

clefts

:

and

all

the rest of the height of the rock

and lumpy, having modelled

will be

sloping, tortuous,

over

a number of kinds of herbs and mosses that

it

DESIGN FOR A GROTTO.

commonly grow about

some

to

to

one

will

and

serpents, aspics, vipers,

appear

will

be a great

run over the said rock, some upwards,

some downwards, disposed

side,

nature, that the

shall

there

come is

often to

have growled

And from jets

;

and

workshop, that

many

of water, which shall

fall

that

other dogs

was natural. distil a great number of into the trench which will

at seeing, thinking that

the said rock will

all

and serpents

natural lizards

them with wonder, as you see

my

a dog in

many

in

and enamelled so

the said animals shall be modelled to

which

lizards,

pleasant gestures and agreeable contortions

like

And

rocks and moist places.

above the said mosses and herbs there

number of

43

it

be in the said cabinet, in which trench there will be a great

number of

tortoises.

And

natural

fishes,

and of

frogs,

and

because upon the bank adjoining the

said trench there will be fishes and frogs, modelled

according

to

my

art of earth, they

who

shall

go

to see

the said cabinet will think that the said fishes, tortoises,

and frogs are natural, and the said trench,

that they

inasmuch as

in the

have come out of said trench there

some that are living. Also, in the said rock will be formed some kind of recess, to hold the glasses and cups of those who may feast within the cabinet and in the same way there will be formed in the said rock certain bins and little receptacles for the cooling of the

will be

:

wine during a repast, which receptacles contain cold water; because

when they

will

shall

always be

full

according to the prescribed measure of their size, the superfluity of the water will flow over into the trench,

and so the water receptacle.

will

always be fresh within the said

Also, in the said cabinet there will be a

44

PALISSY THE POTTER.

table, like in material to the rock,

supported on a rock

and the said

;

which

also will be

an

table will be of

oval fashion, being enamelled, enriched, and colored

with divers colors of enamel, which will shine like a

And

mirror.

they

who

be seated to banquet at

shall

the said table will be able to put fresh water to their

wine without quitting the said cabinet; for they take

from the

it

of the

jets

will

of the

fountains

said

rock.'

great dismay of his

Palissy then proceeds, to the

way

interlocutor, to relate the

arrange the trees that are cabinet.

It

to

is

to

trained

upward and lopped,

little

to

this

be an architectural plan altogether.

elms,

to

which he proposes

form the chamber of

Young grown

in

planted

at

even distances, are until

be

to

have

their trunks

a sufficient height to form the columns of a

They

temple.

are then to

receive, above

and

below, circular wounds, which will cause the deposit of fresh

wood and

pond

to the pedestals

To

natural protuberances that shall corres-

and

capitals of ordinary columns.

the objection that the trunks of trees form

clumsy

columns, Palissy replies that columns imitate the trunks of trees, and that as a thing superior to the imitation of

wood must be pillars made of

architectural

stone

and mortar.

first

into the pattern of

and

all

design.

The

fixed to

grow

ornaments

than

The branches

capitals of these

are to be trained in the

nice,

so trunks of growing

better

which shoot from the

worked

it,

must always be

itself

instance,

living

pillars

and elaborately

an architrave,

frieze, cor-

the accessories of a complete architectural first

young elm-branches having been

into the exact pattern of

a

little

thus

temple,

all

A LIVING TEMPLE.

45

the remaining shoots will be compelled to run together into a

To

dense green roof, thoroughly impervious

answered

ridicule, Palissy

abounded

that gardens absurdities,

fairly, in his

in dragons, cocks,

to rain.

own

time,

and other

even soldiers on horseback, cut out of

rosemary and other plants

if

:

men admired

such

how much more thoroughly should they admire living house, which, when established, would not

things, his

need attention from the gardeners more frequently

Over the columns Palissy

than about twice a year.

designs that there shall be formed

The

and then a cornice.

frieze

Then, as the

vacant space.

first

is to

be

an architrave, left as

tree grows,

a broad

some of

the

shoots which spring out of the architrave and cornice shall

be

proportioned antique

letters.

order that ingratitude

by

form of well-

chosen for training in the

may

'

And,' says Palissy,

shall be

writing in the said frieze a text taken from the

Wisdom, where

it is

written

:

"

When

their fear

her counsel

when

the fools perish,

mock

cometh, because they would none of

when

she uttered her voice in the streets,

she cried in the chief places of concourse and in

the openings of the gates, city."

in

Book of

then they shall call upon Wisdom, and she will

when

in

be contended against even

and vegetative things, there

insensible

'

That

is

in order that

doctrine,

may

what

shall

men who

and uttered her words

in the

be written in the said frieze,

reject

wisdom,

discipline,

and

be condemned even by the testimony of

souls vegetative

and

insensible.'

then, will also supply three spaces

The

three facades,,

upon which

similar

writings shall be placed.

There

is

a very wide difference between the cocks

PALISSY THE POTTER.

46

and men-at-arms carved out of shrubs, and Palissy's design

a green temple.

for

I

have not space for

quoting the minute details of the plan, but enough has

been described

to

show

that here in gardening, as in

other things to which he turned his mind, Palissy

all

had

his

own

and

large thoughts,

corresponded

that they

boldness and the power of his genius.

to the

The second green the garden,

to

is

fountain within

be a

is

to

cabinet, little

which

is

to the east

temple like the

first,

of

but the

be walled with diaphanous white

forming prominences, and recesses which will

flints,

serve as seats.

The water

of this fountain shall turn

wheels, and the revolving of the wheels shall

little

cause the blowing of certain

little

bellows into flageolets

placed in a brook at the foot of the rock, so that the flageolets being caused to

sound among the water,

will

emit gurgling notes that will imitate pretty closely the

song of divers

Upon

gale.

birds,

and especially

that of the nightin-

the frieze of the cabinet over this fountain

the device inscribed

to be,

is

'

The

children of

wisdom

are the church of the just/ and in the pediment, on the three faces outside, there are to be written these several inscriptions



:

'

Perverse thoughts part themselves from



Fools despise wisdom and instruction God Happy is the man that findeth wisdom.' The third of the green cabinets, which will be under '

'

'

'

the western rock, in the

is

to

be constructed like the others,

form of a living temple, but the natural rock

itself is to

be used for the rock of the cabinet.

pipes, led through

it,

be natural fountains.

shall

pour out what

will

Waterappear

to

Natural unpolished corals are to

be attached here and there

to

its

surface, and rare

47

BUDDING PROVERBS.

stones, such as chalcedony, jasper, porphyry, crystals,

unpolished, are to be so neatly fitted here and there into

surface, that they shall appear to have been

its

formed upon the spot by nature.

In this cabinet there

be a table formed of a rare stone, upon a pedestal

is to

On

of rock enchased with chalcedony and jasper.

form

frieze of the cabinet the trees are to tion

The

'

:

And

fruit

of the righteous

above

this inscrip-

a tree of

wise

to the

'



The Lord

'

'

:

The way

giveth

Wisdom giveth life to them that have The last cabinet, which will be to the

and

life.'

pediments of the three external faces shall

in the

be written three several inscriptions is

is

the

'

of

life

wisdom



'

it.'

south,

to

is

contain a rock, hollowed and studded with rare stones

from the sea-shore, both such as naturally would be

among

found there, and others that have been ballast brought

from foreign climes and discharged out

With these stones are

of the holds of ships.

mixed

figulines of lizards

turquoises spring,

;

and serpents, with

and within the cavern there

and on a rude

frieze

that

thirsteth,

On

have no money.'

temple

wisdom

outside is

be

shall

:

'

The

And

fountain

outside,

three faces, the three inscriptions are to be

:

'

is

wisdom

'

fear

'

the

of

on the

The

— The of Lord beginning of wisdom' — 'The crown of wisdom of the Lord

'

:

of the living

frieze

written

word of God.'

the

Ho, waters, and ye

to the

the

be a

shall

be inscribed in a

shall

come ye

be

to

artificial

mosaic formed with variously colored stones every one that

the

love

is

the

is

the

fear of the Lord.' * # Except that from Isaiah, these texts are

Proverbs or Ecclesiastes, but identify

them in

it

is

not

the English version.

all

taken from

always possible

to

48

PALISSY THE POTTER.

Having thus

detailed the plan of his eight cabinets

garden-houses,

or

proceeds

Palissy

describe

to

the

proposed arrangement of the rock or mountain-sides,

which being

situated to

north and

the

west of the

garden, have southern and eastern aspects, exposed

The

greatly to the sun.

rocks are to be hollowed

through their whole length into a series of chambers, serving sundry purposes

some

:

to contain tender plants

during the winter, with provision for the care of them others to contain tools; others, seeds; others, a store

of fruits or vegetables to the gardeners, to

be

hewn a

;

&c.

others, for

temporary dwellings

Over these chambers there

terrace, reached

by steps

is

at either end,

cut also from the rock.

The

terrace

which are

to

is

to

be bordered by a balustrade, on

be damask roses, violets and the most

fragrant flowers, in enamelled pots side, thickly

overhung with hawthorns, and other shrubs

and

trees agreeable alike to

the

doors

men and

chambers some are

to

Of

in the rock.

may

to

be used for pleasure, others are

to

other

overhang these chambers are disposed their fruits, that they

that pleasant,

may make

sunny place

;

thrown upon the terrace for

may

trees

which

to entice birds

their dwelling in

in winter, seeds are to

be

their use, in order that this

known among of resort. The

be

a good place

is

dry on the unshaded portion of

The hawthorns and

the terrace.

it

dry in the sun, so that from them they

be brought out

terrace

be

these upper

contain prunes, cherries, and such fruits as

customary

by

birds, are to

and windows, pleasantly designed, of an

upper series of chambers

to

and on the other

;

the birds at all times as

stranger

who may walk

49

THE CENTRAL AMPHITHEATRE. upon

sounds of

birds,

sweet

beside

terrace,

this

and

scents,

and grateful shade, and the delightful

prospect over the whole surface of the garden,

be pleasantly surprised, by

to

induced politely

who

bow

now and

is

also

then being

some gentleman or lady, balustrade and looks down pen-

to

leans over the

to

upon the flowers, the said gentleman or lady

sively

proving afterwards clay

sweet

—a

A

rustic figuline.

proposed

He

be nothing more than potter's

to

to place

upon

proceeds next

few such figures Palissy

his terrace.

describe

to

plan which he

the

proposes for his central amphitheatre.

The stream

down from the mountains, having meandered through some part of the garden, is to be divided in the brought

centre into two currents, which are to diverge and flow

round an island exactly circular

one current through the garden.

to continue rippling in

About

margin of

the

in form, then reuniting,

this island there are to

be planted

poplar trees at equal distances, the stems of which

having been allowed

grow

to

erect columns of

into

sufficient height to serve as pillars to the amphitheatre,

are then to be inclined towards each other until they all

meet

at their points,

summit of

the

and form a pyramid.

pyramid there

is

to

At

the

be fixed a vane, so

blow from any quarter,

mouth whatever wind may and the wind so caught is to

flow through a

of musical

made

as to receive into

series

its

pipes, varying

in

magnitude, in such manner that there shall be at the

summit of

the central amphitheatre a kind of organ,

with which the wind will always

Within the amphitheatre little

bridges

VOL.

II.

— there

is

4

to

make

— which

iEolian music.

is

approached by

be a round table, and there

50

PALISSY THE POTTER.

are to be easy seats, and places to contain vessels and

vases for the service of the place.

by four

doors, corresponding to the four broad walks

which converge upon about

be entered

It is to

feet

five

Outside, and at a distance of

it.

from the pyramid, there

be a

to

is

second circle, formed of young shrubs, which are

connected together with brass wire

summit of these shrubs

to the

also

;

summit of

to

be

from the

the columns,

and between the columns, brass wires are

to extend,

enclosing everywhere spaces over head, which are to contain a large variety of birds, both song-birds and birds of '

gay plumage.

And by

such

means/ says

Palissy,

banquet under the said pyramid

shall

'

will

they

who

have the

pleasure of the song of birds, of the croak of frogs

which

will

be in the brook, of the murmuring of the

water which

will

be flowing at the feet of the columns

that will sustain the said pyramid, the freshness of the

brook and of the trees that

will

surround

it,

the fresh-

ness of the soft wind that will be engendered by the

movement of will also

the

be the pleasure of the music that will be at

summit and

music

There

the leaves of the said poplars.

will

said

pyramid, which

play with the blowing of the wind, as

have already

Around

points of the

I

told you.'

the frieze of this amphitheatre

other inscription from the that

have hated wisdom

own

way.'

is

Book of Proverbs

shall eat of the

be an-

to



fruit

'

They

of their

This amphitheatre completes the series of cabinets with which Palissy proposed to ornament his garden.

He

proceeds next to the consideration of some minor

WATER-WORKS. All trees and plants, for example, which

details.

proper

51

to

defend from

frost,

is

are to be placed under the

which protect them from the

shelter of the mountains,

north and the west winds

most hurtful

it

those being the two winds

;

to vegetation

in

Saintonge.

naming

In

those two winds, Palissy expresses his appreciation of the fact that a

wholesome

wind

may

be hurtful in one region, and

in another.

There are

be in the garden

to

many

little

planted with such flowers as delight in water.

islands,

For the

watering of the entire garden, or of any part of

it,

at

Palissy suggests the use of a series of portable

will,

troughs, the bottoms of which are pierced with minute holes.

raised

The

troughs, connected readily together,

upon props, are

tains in a

carry water from the foun-

to

may

running stream, which

controlled in

and

any portion of

its

be checked and

course at the discretion

of the gardener.

Those ingenious hydraulic engines, dear to the polite world two or three centuries ago, which suddenly discharged from some part of a garden-walk a

jet

of

water on the unsuspecting stranger, Palissy declares that

he

will not

admit

into his paradise.

no spring-water guns. he would place

He

Instead of these

will

dull

have jokes,

garden a few statues holding a

in his

vase of water in one hand, and an inscription in the other, so placed that

examine the

when any one

inscription,

he

may

steps forward to

have the vase of water

emptied on his head. '

Item,'

— says

Palissy,

who

is

unable to

resist the

temptation offered even in this odd walk of art for the exercise of ingenuity,



'

item. I

would make

also other

52

PALISSY THE POTTER.

which should have a certain target or ring

statues,

suspended from one hand, pages ran with lance

in

order that

in rest against the

when

the

said target,

so soon as they should hit the ring, the statue would

them a great blow on the head with a large

strike

sponge saturated with water, in such said sponge

that

sort

the

would discharge a large quantity of water,

because of the compression and the greatness of the blow.'

Bounding the garden on the south there are to be meadows with hawthorn hedges, through which the brook

artificial

the to

margin

be

;

made a

is

made

to flow, planted with trees

under the hedges of

this

meadow

upon

there

is

Bounding the garden on

pleasant path.

the east are to be fields planted with different fruits,

one covered with

formed to

into

filberts,

flax,

and

in tying

with chestnuts,

an apple orchard, and,

be spaces devoted

Among

one

to

in short, there are

each kind of profitable

the hills on the north will be plants, suitable for

one

making

fruit.

grown hemp,

ligatures required

up the shrubs and flowers of the garden.

Bounding the garden on the west

will

and rocks already mentioned. The cost of a garden which should

be the woods

realize this bold

and elaborate idea would certainly be

The

great.

usual expenditure, however, according to the taste of that time in the formation of a garden, with rate architectural works,

was so excessive,

its

elabo-

that Palissy

declares himself able to construct his paradise at a cost less

than

that

which had been incurred

thousand other gardens country.

built

by great men

for a in

his

HOW THE GARDEN WAS Hereupon

the

money might

suggests

disputant

53

SUGGESTED. to

Palissy, that

be better spent in buying offices and

seeking promotion in the world, than in the creation

among

for oneself of a place of recreation birds,

Upon

and flowers.

this hint,

'

greater

for the

reverence

for

nothing better than to

fly the

He

on the earth, which

and a great recreation

is

bellies

says

i :

to

Psalm sung

when

a just thing before God,

to those

who

contemplate

will

He

relates

His gar-

suggested upon hearing the 104th

first

by pious maidens,

in the fields

Eeformed

the

found

withdraw myself

admiringly the wondrous works of Nature.'

den had been

I

than

neighborhood and the

acquaintance of such people, and to labor

Bernard expostu-

own

their

divine majesty of God.'

and

ways of men, who

lates briefly against the avaricious

have

fruits,

religion

in the

days

flourished in Saintonge.

how, contemplating the sense of the said

Psalm, he was seized with so great an affection for the building of his garden, that tells us,

(

I

have done nothing but

myself the building of the same ing,

I

have seemed

to

be about

'

since that time,' he

toil ;

it,

over again within

and as

often, in sleepit

happened

to

was asleep upon my bed, my garden seemed to be already made, and in the same form that I described to you, and I already began to eat its fruits and recreate myself therein and it seemed to me that walking, in the morning,

me

last

week,

when

that

I

;

through the said garden,

I

vellous deeds which the

Nature

to

perform.

'

The

came

to

consider the mar-

Sovereign has

commanded

pious naturalist then pro-

ceeds, under the figure of a dream, to walk about the

garden of

his fancy,

and

to call attention to the

wisdom

54

PALISSY THE POTTER.

The

works of creation.

displayed in the

accurate

adoption of means to divers ends, he points out, in

with an acuteness that displays

particular instances,

how

thoroughly he had been gifted with the naturalist's

and how philosophic was the

faculty of observation, disposition of his mind.

From

he passes naturally

this topic

the avarice of benefice-holders,

The censure

sy at their

first

invention,

by

fields

ignorance of

or the

of the agricultural tools,

their clumsiness,' leads

would be

a considera-

havoc done among the woods and

tion of the

farmers.

to

clum-

*

which are preserved ever to

the question,

Which

in

tools

requisite for the construction of the before-

mentioned garden

?

Palissy having

named them,

feigns

with a lively wit another dream, in which his tools

were

be heard quarrelling for precedence,

to

being at

last

that they

rebuked by the Astrolabe, who

were

all

subject to the head of

spoke so contemptuously about man, straight line in

him/

that Bernard,

'

told

in

them

man, they

who has

still

and

not a

a dream,

desired for himself to subject a man's head to measure-

He

ment.

researches into his 1

and

tools

separate

upon a series of humorous human heads and bodies, by means of

then

all

enters

retorts,

He

men, and

fine ladies,

follies

and sand-baths, which

the terrestrial parts from the exhalative

matter.'

manner

flasks

examines

priests,

and

fops, lawyers, trades-

relates the result in such a

as to give a lively picture of the sins and

prevalent in his

own

This leads him to

time.

speak of the great troubles he has seen occasioned by the

had

follies

'

'

and rogueries of men.'

thought within himself to

He

make

tells

the

how he

design of

IM SEARCH OF AN IDEA.

55

or city of refuge in which to retire in time

some town

of wars and troubles, and evade the malice of horrible

whom

and insensate plunderers,

now seen

I

many

have before

execution of their furious rage against

in the

a great multitude of families, without having regard just or unjust cause,

and even without any commission

or commandment.'

us His peace cesses of

men

'

but

;

that

you have not a

to

I

if I

pray

to

God,' he says,

you had seen

to give

'

the horrible ex-

have seen during these troubles,

hair in your head that would not have

trembled at the fear of falling

to the

mercy of man's

And he who has not seen these things, could never think how great and horrible a persecution is.' Being then asked to tell how persecution arose in his own district, Palissy proceeds to relate the History of the malice.

Troubles of Saintonge, because in

deeds there done,

abundance of such

in

local records there

to write

order that by the

might be provided

materials for the study of the general historian.*

From

the consideration

naturally fortress

in

would be well that

each town there should be persons deputed

faithfully the

fit

it

comes

of these troubles, Bernard

to the description

of that impregnable

which he proposes as a city of refuge,

one might be secure in time of war.'

how, when he had proposed problem,

'

A

himself the

wheretells

us

difficult

considering the furious batteries of which

* Under the

and

to

He

'

titles

of The Naturalist looking out on Evil Days,

History of the Troubles in

Saintonge f the whole of the

text of Palissy

garden

den

will

itself,

which follows the account of the delectable be found translated in the Appendix. Of the gar-

the design has been sufficiently detailed in the pre-

ceding abstract.

to

56

PALISSY THE POTTER.

men now make

use,

was almost

I

my

went every day with

head bowed, fearing

He

first

desired to think.'

some one of them might not

assist

an idea, but he found they could in

in obtaining

for a copy, " seeing that

no case serve him

walls are overcome, the town

Truly/ he says,

'

that

is

is

when

Then, finding

the

forced to a surrender.

but a poor body of a town

where the members cannot consolidate and other.'

to

considered the existing towns, in order to

ascertain whether

him

I

lest I

me

should look at something which would cause forget the things of which

and

out of hope,

that the figures of

aid

each

Jacques de

Cerseau, and the plans of Vitruvius and Sebastian of whose works there existed a translation aid him, Palissy the

'

walked

like

a

man





did not

absent in mind,

head bowed, without saluting or regarding any-

body, because of the interest which was engaged on behalf of the said town,' In discussing his garden, and in other places, Palissy

occasionally shows that he has paid attention to details

of architecture, and that he has been studying Vitruvius.

It is

extremely probable that he was influenced

in this respect

and

by Jean

Bullant, the architect of

his fellow-laborer at the

Ecouen,

chateau in executing orna-

mental works.

Bullant was an enthusiastic student of

Vitruvius, and

must have been on familiar terms of

intellectual acquaintanceship with shall see presently that they

at

Ecouen

Bernard Palissy.

We

were fellow-laborers not

only.

Palissy, getting

no aid from the architects, examined

also artfully constructed

gardens, and endeavored to

gather some hint from the complex patterns of the

THE SHELL AND THE FORTRESS. flower-beds

failing in this also,

;

57

he began

to

wander

through the woods, mountains, and valleys, to examine

by the animals

the fortresses constructed

had taught how

whom God There

provide for their defence.

to

follows then another narrative, in

which the

naturalist

displays his exquisite appreciation of the marvels of creation. all

'

found things,' he says,

I

'

which made

abashed, because of the marvellous Divine Provi-

dence which

had

such care upon these

bestowed

Encouraged and delighted by

creatures.'

this

study

of creation from a special point of view, Palissy us how, to

'

joyous enough,

one side and

further obtain

mals

;

I

walked hither and

to another,

some

for the space of several

always exercised

I

support

my

Finding

at length

see whether

to

thither, I

could

my

months,

art as potter,

family.'

rocks of the ocean

that '

it

that

suggestions suited to his

was

(

on the shore and the

he was most likely

own

to find

particular design, Palissy

confined his studies to the sea.

The

delightful narra-

tive of these researches into nature will

selection

tells

lesson from the buildings of ani-

which lasted

during which time to

me

from the works of Palissy

be found in a

at the close

of the

biography, together with the account given by Bernard himself of the city of refuge which he finally proposed to build.

It

will suffice

here to describe the fortress

briefly.

A

citizen of Rochelle,

to Palissy

Guinea,

two large

—a

named L'Hermite, had given

shells that

had been brought from

purple murex, one of those spinous, pink-

lipped shells which

we

occasionally see on English

mantel-pieces, and a conch, one of the massive shells

58

PALISSY THE POTTER.

which we see now and then in England on balconies, or under empty grates. Palissy having observed that '

God had bestowed more

industry upon

weak

things

than upon strong/ selected therefore the weaker of the two shells better for

the

and

;

'

I

could

building of

find,'

my

he says,

fortified

'

nothing

town than

take example from the fortress of the said purple rex, tools

and took straightway a compass, necessary for the making of

The except

picture in

a

was not given description

my

to the

with

rule,

to

mu-

and other

picture.'

world by Palissy,

which the

preceding

59

PLAN OF THE FORTRESS. woodcut has been made form

to

copied from the

is

The spiral commences

correspond. Palissy

shell.

by drawing an open square (C), surrounded by a high wall corresponding to the backs of houses that

have

their

all

Within

this

galleries

The

windows opening upon an outer

wall,

(e e e)

street.

and surrounding the square, are holding

for

artillery

under cover.

lesser walls before the galleries are pierced with

and the cannons pointing over the whole

portholes,

surface of the square are ready to open

fire

on any

enemy who, by mine or otherwise, should find their way into the centre of the town. Near one of the angles

the entrance to the square,

is

governor's house (D) into

the

said

'

;

the

that the

none might enter

in order that

square without

and by

permission of the

Having made the square, Palissy begins from the portal to draw his spiral line but since the business of cannon is to play in straight lines, he makes the first turn of his spiral in a square form. governor.'

;

None

of the walls are simply walls of defence, since

Palissy considers that build walls

is

it

a very wasteful practice to

which serve no purpose

His defensive walls are therefore

in a time of peace. at

same time

the

walls of dwellings (bbb), which open to the inner street

with

all

their

present outwards

back, '

pierced

doors and windows, while they

against the

only for shot

even children above

fending

it

on the day of

displacing any one of dwelling.'

six

enemy a and

strong,

missiles

;

so

hard that

years old could aid in de-

assault,

and

them from

At each angle of

his

that, too,

without

own home and

the spiral

(a a a), under which the towns-people pass

is

a battery

by a vaulted

60

PALISSY THE POTTER.

way

can be secured

that

gates.

each

The guns from

ready

becomes an enclosed drawn

Palissy, having

in

of the spiral line, finds, third,

are

being

made

that if

he were

street,

with

fortress in itself.

same form the next turn when he comes to draw the

to

the

continue with the extended

square, each street would be too long to be

commanded

wholly by the batteries; his square, therefore, verted into

straight

play on any

to

enclosed between them, and each

gates shut,

its

B B)

(B

for that especial purpose,

enemy

battery at each end of

the

street, all the streets

heavy

either side with

at

is

con-

The same arrangement

an octagon.

is

continued, which provides that each turn of the spiral

shows a strong wall outwards windows, and

From

this

traffic

inwards

arrangement

it

enemy, and

to the to the

doors,

people of the town.

follows

that,

in

w alking T

inwards from the outer *gate (A), each street will be

found

to

have

wall upon the

traffic

on the right hand, and

fortress-

only the streets immediately outside

left;

the walls of the central square having shops, windows,

and doors on each will

have

to

wind

his

side

way

of the way.

and under

to visit

a house near the entrance

Having made two

the batteries, if he should desire to the central square.

turns in the octagon form, Palissy

considered that his town was sive.

traveller

also round all turns of the

spiral,

all

The

made

sufficiently exten-

Accordingly he finished with a battery over the

outer gates.

By the means

of assault that existed in his

own

time,

such a fortress as that planned by Palissy would be, of course, impregnable.

ance of any one

It

is

street to

quite true, that the resist-

a governor

who

plotted

a

THE FORTRESS IMPREGNABLE.

61

surrender, causing the gates of that street to be closed,

would prevent either the enemy from passing in, or It is quite the traitorous governor from passing out. true, that a small garrison,

and

that of people following

would be

in ordinary life their peaceful trades,

cient to defend this town. entire circuit of

quite true, that if the

It is

outer walls were

its

suffi-

demolished by

besiegers, the inhabitants of the town, having retreated to the next street,

few

would have

feet of ground,

no more than the

lost

and be as well protected by

walls as though the siege were then for the

commencing.

A

first

their

time

breach or mine would secure en-

trance into nothing but a single and straight street,

commanded by two batteries able to sweep down all And what is more,' says Palissy, who might enter. '

with perfect truth,

'

if

the

enemies had been

determined, and had broken a

way

still

more

quite through the

middle of the said town, and that they could pass and repass through the said town to the abreast,

drawing with them

artillery,

yet so

it

is

all

that they

number of

forty

kinds of engines and

would not yet have

gained that town.'

The

resources of artillery could in the time of Palissy

produce nothing that would have been able a town constructed upon

this

ingenious plan.

to

subdue

Modern

history suggests to us instantly the use that has

made

of barricades, but Palissy appears not to have

taken as an element into his calculations the ties

of a revolt against authority.

his

city

which

been

in

of refuge were to those

fall

possibili-

If the population of

out upon the topics

days divided France, and Catholics

should fortify themselves in one street, Huguenots in

PALISSY THE POTTER.

62

another, the peaceful streets lying within

any blockade

would be converted into prisons. As a curiosity, a specimen of ingenuity, this idea for a fortress is extremely interesting. subjects on

It

shows another of the

which Palissy employed

his

busy

many

wit,

and

shows again how thoroughly the love of nature governed fields

the

all

From

other thoughts.

his

he brought his counsel

the

woods and

to the farmers.

Among

rocks he learnt the secret of the water-springs,

and learnt a wiser doctrine than crystals,

from the

moulded by a

upon which God

had

for

delectable garden

his

was

even when he wished

were earth-

influence, descending

— beauty — were

the

elegant designs in clay.

A

Lizards,

stars.

chosen models

plastic

that fossils

leaves,

lavished

flowers

patterns

his ideal of earthly bliss, to

and

plan a fortress that should

withstand the utmost fury of a siege, he visited the nests of birds,

and wandered on the rocks by the sea-

shore, and finally adopted the design that to

him by

the contemplation of a shell.

was suggested

63

CIVIL WAR.

CHAPTER

IV.

PALISSY REMOVES FROM SAINTES.

The book

described in the preceding chapters was

issued in the years 1563 and 1564. the

copies

issued

in

the

year

On

1564,

the cover of

author

the

described as Bernard Palissy, of the Tuileries.

is

Palissy

continued, therefore, to reside at Saintes only for a

very short time after the publication of his Trustworthy Receipt, and then, under circumstances which presently examine, he

Hitherto

among the

shall

to Paris.

been found necessary

has

it

removed

we

to

include

the chapters of this narrative a brief sketch of

origin

Huguenots.

of

civil

We

war between

the

Catholics and

could not understand the character

of Palissy, or his position in the town of Saintes,

— we

could not feel the significance of the denunciations, or the true

sense of the social narratives in the Trust-

worthy Receipt, spirit

stable

— and

we

could not enter into the

of the relations between Palissy and the Con-

Montmorenci, or

his other patrons, without re-

calling to our minds, as political events.

Our

we went

on, the progress of

narrative of the affairs of France

PALISSY THE POTTER.

64

need, however, be continued only over one or two

more

years.

It

closed with his imprisonment, and

must be resumed

how

press,

and what was the

when Bernard went

1564,

we may understand when his book issued

in order that

matters stood at the time

from the

it

position of affairs in

to Paris.

Settled in Paris,

Palissy devoted himself wholly to his labors as a potter

and a

naturalist.

He

that distracted France,

dom

took no part in the contention

beyond the exercise of a

him

tions did, indeed, not leave it

humored as

of speech, that seems to have been

eccentricity in the simple-minded

will

The

man.

to repose

be seen, escape his due share of

was formed,

his character

We

taken.

free-

;

conten-

he did not,

affliction;

but

his final course of life

was

must now dwell

for a

few minutes on the

current of affairs in France between the date of the

imprisonment of Palissy and that of capital

;

for us to

from

that time

forward

it

his arrival in the

will not be requisite

pay more than occasional and

slight attention

to political events.

At

the

end of September,

1562, Rouen,

in the year.

besieged by the Catholics, was taken.

The day

before

was taken, Antony, King of Navarre, having to the trenches on a summons which the might-

the town retired iest

have

to

obey, received the shot of a harquebus in

his left shoulder.

He was

carried

away

and sacrament; caused the book of Job

him

for his

to

to

confession

be read to

comfort; publicly declared that

if

he re-

covered he would adopt the Reformed opinions; and turned his back upon a Jacobin before he died. wife, Jeanne d'Albret,

had

Catholics in Paris, while

left

him

to act

His

with the

she had herself retired to

THE KING OF NAVARRE KILLED.

65

maintain Reformed opinions, and educated in them her

son Henry,

who became

Henry IV. So

afterwards King

Antony, King of Navarre, was gathered

to his fathers,

and bequeathed

to

other Navarres his royal state and

income of about

six

thousand a year.

There Rouen,

is

another incident connected with the siege of

told

by two or three contemporary

which furnishes an odd changes

to

which mortal

illustration of the life

was subject

writers,

chances and

in those days,

when murder was every man's right-hand neighbor. There was a certain young Norman, Captain Sevile, shot in the head, and tumbled from the rampart as a bird

is

At

picked off from a bough.

the foot of the

rampart he was taken up for dead, and buried about

mid-day with many corpses. evening with a horse

to

His

valet,

his master,

embalm

body, and

Having so

it

to

that

be shown the

away

his master's

for the comfort of his parents.

men, with faces

disinterred fifteen or sixteen

much

in the:

and learning

he was both dead and buried, pressed place of burial, that he might take

coming

bruised and blood-stained that he could not

recognise one as his master, he, with the aid of

companions, put the bodies hastily again

some

into the ground.

After their return to the camp, the faithful servant that

felt

thev had been irreverent towards the dead,

in

them so hastily to their graves that dogs might commit an easy burglary upon the last home of

restoring

;

his master, if his

master had been one of the

and hurried back

disinterred carelessly.

He

companions

to return

moon was VOL.

II.

up.

persuaded,

into the

men

ground again so

therefore,

some of

his

when

the

with him after sunset,

Arrived at the ground, the valet saw 5

PALISSY THE POTTER.

66 the

hand of a half-huried

soil,

and on

The

moonlight.

recognised Sevile

belonging

was then dug

to his brother's

glittered in the

ring attracted his attention, and he

as

it

protruding from the

diamond ring

finger a

its

man

to

his

Captain

master.

up, placed on a horse, and taken

lodging,

where he was

left

on a mattress, because

third day, stretched

until the

his friends

perceived that he breathed, and that there was heat re-

maining

the room, but their

whom

drugs

Many

body.

in his

surgeons were brought to

when they saw

to

the patient, carried

crowd of expectant

the

away

sufferers for

was more hope. On the third day there were brought a physician and an advocate, who, forcing open the captain's teeth, poured into his mouth a drug While they were laboring to restore life in with wine. this way, the town was taken, the house entered by the enemy, the brother slaughtered, and the body of there

the captain roughly taken from the bed, an

out of the window. there neglected for the

filth

and straw

upon a dunghill, and lay three days, becoming covered with It

fell

were thrown out of the windows

that

At

of the same dwelling.

captain's body, and carried to

a village, in which

tain's

wounds were

restored. 1

forty-two

'

I

thrown

it

was

last it

a cousin found the

out through the breaches

resuscitated,

dressed,

and

and the cap-

his health perfectly

have seen him,' D'Aubigne

tells

us,

years afterwards, acting as deputy from

Normandy in that when we

the National Assemblies,

and observed

signed our transactions, he always put

" Francois Sevile, three times dead, three times buried,

and three times by the grace of God ministers (contrary to

I

my

Some make him

restored.''

advice) desired to

67

THE PRINCE OF CONDE. from

desist

entreat

this eccentricity,

him out of

it.'

but they were unable to

There

is

a flavor of romance

and a suspicious dwelling on the number three in of course, also, a breathing man, fairly Sevile's tale ;

put under ground for a few hours without a coffin,

however slow might be the process of life, would have His exaggerated his breath stopped most effectually. story was, however, credited in his own day, and cer-

was

tainly

suited to the

day

which

in

was

it

believed.

After the taking of Rouen, the Prince of Conde,

being reinforced, marched out of Orleans upon Paris.

There he was delayed by Catherine before the faubourgs of St. Germain, St. Jacques, and St. Marceau, and

lost

time over a vain endeavor to adjust peaceParis being strengthened,

fully the matters in dispute.

Conde, on the 10th of December, 1562, broke up

camp, and hastened towards Normandy

Of

English succors. Calvinists, lics, I shall

the

meet some

English troops aiding the

and of the German troops aiding the Cathonot speak.

concerning the

We may

German

troops,

them were dismissed with a first

to

his

remember, however, that

when bands

of

safe passport, after the

war, Catherine gave secret orders (wisely dis-

obeyed) that fallen

they should be

in spite of their passport,

upon and destroyed

in

passage out of

their

France, in order that none of their brethren might thereafter feel inclined to take part in

and aggravate

the tumults of the country.

The

Prince of Conde, hurrying to

pursued by the army of the at

Dreux.

A

royalists,

and overtaken

was there fought on the The constable was taken prisoner,

terrible

19th of December.

Normandy, was

battle

PALISSY THE POTTER.

68 •

The Marshal

St.

Andre, one of the triumvirate, was destroyed by

the

and one of

of a personal enemy.

pistol-ball

on the other

won

sons was killed.

his

was taken

side,

— of his

Andre by

St.

imprisonment.

Conde and

his

Prince of Conde,

The

prisoner.

Duke

with difficulty by the

mained deprived of

The

battle

was

who

of Guise,

two chief competitors

at court,

his death,

and of the constable by

The two

prisoners, the Prince of

were on each

the constable,

side treated

with affectionate respect, great pains being taken influence their minds, and disabuse into

which

it

was supposed

The Duke went

re-

of Guise,

that they

left sole

them of had

to

the errors

fallen.

head of the Eoyalists,

besiege the head-quarters of the Huguenots in

to

Orleans, while Admiral Coligny, sole general of the

Reformers, was

and preparing

in

Normandy

to bring

awaiting English money,

help to D'Andelot his brother,

by whom Orleans was defended.

The Duke

having ridden out before Orleans

to

rations

hoped

on the river for a grand that

The

by which he

Orleans might be taken, was shot down at

The duke was

de Mere. it

review the prepa-

assault,

twenty paces by an assassin of good

days;

of Guise,

was

assassin,

taken

birth,

home and

said that the bullet had

under question

and

Jean Poltrot died in six

been poisoned.

torture,

Coligny and Beza as the instigators of the

Both denied the accusation paid hired

money him

;

work of an

crime.

Coligny said that he had

to Poltrot for service as

for the

accused

a spy, but never

assassin.

The Duke

of

Guise then died a death of violence, as Antony of

Navarre had died, as Marshal

and as most of the great friends

Andre had died, and rivals who sur-

St.

THE DUKE OF GUISE KILLED.

69

own

vived him were to die, each in his

The

turn.

duke died counselling peace, and there succeeded a son, hot in passion, who regarded Coligny as the assassin

some years paid

of his father, and after

vengeance on the Day of

The

death of the

Bartholomew.

St.

Duke of Guise produced a

the hostilities, while the

queen labored

to

dying counsel. Coligny held out against

Normandy,

but he being in

was persuaded

to

consent

to

was signed

March, 1563.

It left

the

at

in

concession,

all

the captive Prince of

Conde

terms which saved Orleans,

Reformers, at the same time that treaty

lull

carry out his

and secured tolerable terms

as he believed,

The

his debt of

for the

closed the war.

it

Amboise, on the 19th of

Reformers

at libertv to

wor-

ship as openly as they pleased, in all towns held

by

them at the date of the pacification. Elsewhere they were subjected to numerous restrictions. Coligny, together with a large body of the Reformers, protested

Conde

loudly against the conduct of the Prince of

in

Amboise at a time when, the Duke of Guise being dead, victory was certain. Coligny signing the conditions of

had an army gathered with much care

which would have concession of a

The

compel the Catholics

sufficed to

was

Conde

quitted their

and there was peace.

There was, indeed, need of

commerce and arms;

treaty

into

and the army of Coligny dispersed.

constable and the Prince of

captivity,

The

full religious liberty.

signed, however,

Normandy,

in

fields

agriculture,

were

France.

rest for

men had been

untitled, or

ravaged

;

From

called to

the finances of

the country and the bread of the people were almost

destroyed.

The poor were compelled

to

plunder.

PALISSY THE POTTER.

70

Hordes of brigands overspread the country, acknowledged

by the

ferocity

in

among whom

rivalled

leaders,

military

was none more cruel than Blaise de Montluc. There was need of rest; but there were no minds calmed, there was no party subdued, there was no party satisfied. It was, therefore, to be foreseen by all thoughtful men, that there would be a renewal of the war when, on all sides, a little breath there

when he

Palissy spoke of this

had been recovered.

was about to relate his plan for a city of refuge and if we do not think that the allusion was interpolated by Palissy before committing his work to the press, (it w as published a few months afterwards,) we must conclude that this last part of his book at least was ;

T

imprisonment.

his

written

after

when

hear you

1

that

I

you do not

some

peace.' first

It

'

that

was

it

'

I

Him

will please

me,

to say,

pray to

to

it

still

God,'

is

give us His

beginning of the peace between

in the

and second

made

and that you have

us,

fear of a popular outbreak.'

the answer,

the

send

to

is

to

assured of the peace which

feel

God

has pleased

seems

It

querist

his

talk,'

'

civil

war

that Palissy's

Trustworthy

Receipt was published.

One

of the

Havre and

first

drive out the English, to

had been ceded by Conde, of

peace was

acts of the

money advanced.

in

to

whom

besiege

the

town

pledge for the repayment

Conde,

Paris, lived at ease.

in

Cardinal Lorraine had been distinguishing himself at the council of Trent,

same year, 1563. the duke's death,

which closed

in

December

of the

Coligny, accused by the Guises of

came

to

surrounded by a guard of

answer five

for himself at Paris,

or six hundred gentle-

PEACE MADE WITH ENGLAND.

71

men, which he considered necessary to his safety. Catherine, upon that hint, surrounded the king with a guard of six hundred Swiss and five hundred Frenchmen,

hundred Swiss formed

in addition to the

supported

renci

regarding

honor of

it

The

by Louis XI.

royal guard

cause

the

Constable Montmo-

nephew Coligny,

of his

which concerned the

as a private matter

His opposition

his house.

to the

Church party continued undiminished. Peace was made with England, and France, thirteen years

old,

Rouen.

with

Charles

IX.,

into a

Reformed Majesty of

his

was declared of age queen-mother,

the

at

her

maids of honor, and a gay retinue, accompanied by

no more soldiers than

civility required,

journey through the south of France.

on a

festival

They

travelled,

and fireworks,

through applause

Bayonne, where the young king was Elizabeth,

the

Queen

of

Spain,

plighted to the king's son,

very

much

Don

meet

to

— who

Carlos,

to

his sister

had

been

and married,

against her will, to the gray-headed father

of her betrothed.

The

court set out upon this trip

in the

year 1564, and returned

visited

many

in 1565, after

having

may

be that

of the southern provinces.

Catherine during

some

then set forward

this

tour

was

It

visited

by Palissy

at

point in the royal progress not too distant from

Saintes,

and that she then engaged

his services

her proposed palace of the Tuileries. Palissy

was indebted

for his

removal

It

may

be that

to Paris to the

success of his labors at the Chateau of Ecouen. architect of the chateau, Jean Bullant, assist in building the

new

and with Bullant as

architect,

upon

was

The

selected to

palace of the queen-mother, it

may

have appeared

72

PALISSY THE POTTER.

summon Palissy as Upon this point we can only natural to

decorator of the gardens. speculate

we know

but

;

with certainty that very soon after the publication of his

Trustworthy Receipt, Bernard Palissy of Saintes

became Bernard

Palissy of the Tuileries, his workshop

being then, as he

us in a later book, within the

tells

precincts of the Tuileries, and near the Seine.

is

The now

object of the

queen-mother

fouuding what

in

was very

called the Palace of the Tuileries

As

natural.

the king

grew

in years,

became

it

less

advisable that he should reside like a child under the

same roof with

his

fore, to quit the

mother; Catherine proposed, there-

Louvre, and establish a habitation of

She by no means intended

her own.

from

to retire

interference in the state affairs, and resolving

active

not to travel far, laid the foundations of her

new home

on a piece of ground, close

to

Louvre, called the Tuileries.

This ground, which had

been occupied by bought

in

tuileries

1518 by Francis

— by I.,

the

— had

been

and given by him

to his

tile-kilns

Catherine added to

mother, Marie -Louise of Savoy. this

trenches of the

ground, in 1564, a purchase of the

site

of some

adjacent buildings, and in the same year caused the

new

palace to be

architects,

Jean Bullant

digging of the foundations of her

commenced, under

the two

and Philibert Delorme.

named, from field,

its

site,

The

intended

palace

on what had been the

was

potters'

placed out of town for prudence and convenience,

same way one of the finest quarters of old Athens was called the Ceramic, because it covered ground once held by the

Palace of the Tuileries.

extra-mural

potteries.

From

In the

the

precincts

of

the

PALISSY REMOVES TO PARIS.

73

Palace of the Tuileries the traces of the brick and

makers had not been erased even

tile

On

Louis XIV.

of

to the

manuscript

plans

time

the

in

belong

that

beginning of that reign, the place occupied by

wood-stacks and kilns are to be found marked in the courts of the chateau.

Among

were not yet extinguished,

— among

pulling

down of

buildings,

fires

the gardens that

new

partly occupied the site of the the

whose wood

the tile-makers, therefore,

palace,

— among

and the turning up of

earth for the foundations of the queen-mother's

new

From

that

palace, Palissy established his workshop.

time forward he was able to live in constant intercourse with

men

the

in

of genius and the best works of art collected

The

capital.

position of Bernard's

works

at

Saintes must,

indeed, before that time, have proved

inconvenient.

His chief patrons were the great

of the court, from

whom

in

a remote province

not easy to receive frequent visits

most cases be easier

completed works

to visit

them,

to

them, or

from

Paris

was

it

and although

;

houses might be scattered throughout France, in

men their

would

it

to transmit

from

than

Saintes.

Palissy his

removed therefore

workshop

the

in

w ork on behalf r

to

and established

Paris,

His

precincts of the Tuileries.

of the queen-mother formed only a

small part of his daily occupation.

His

being

taste

aided by a study of the best works of Italian

art,

was now

in

able

to

surpass

his

former

creation of elegant and rich designs.

of the large figulines of dogs, or lifelike

human

Palissy

figures



efforts

he the

Very few

traces

rocks,

trees,

his

— now remain;

but he

74

PALISSY THE POTTER.

found

much employment

works

for

in

in his

garden architecture.

which Gresset

composed

own time upon such The park at Chaulnes,

his

executed according

to

delectable garden.

The Chateau

Reux

that of

in

Chartreuse,'

'

was

a plan resembling that of the of Nesle in Picardy,

Normandy, and perhaps

the royal

chateau called Madrid, after the Spanish captivity of

King Francis, in the Wood of Boulogne, are some of the places upon which it is remembered that Bernard

was once employed. Those works of the famous

Palissy

to

Potter which were

meant

adorn rooms, being smaller, more numerous, and protected

better

much more of time.

than his

garden-pieces,

successful in withstanding

the accidents

Statuettes, elegant groups, vases, cups, plates,

corbels, rustic basins,

and clay moulded

forms, enamelled and painted for still

all

have been

into beautiful

many

other uses,

remain, and obtain a high price as works of taste

in our

own day.*

Some

are covered with modellings,

* M. P. A. Cap, the editor of the 8vo. edition of the works of Palissy, publishe

in

1844,

named M. Ch. Sauvageot

as

then the possessor of the most complete series of the works of Palissy, in a collection of the best artistic productions of the

sixteenth century.

Mr. Marryat,

and Porcelain' (1850), says

'

History of Pottery

most extensive and fayence exists in the " Musee

that

complete collection of Palissy 's

in his l

the

Royale," in the Louvre, and in the Hotel de Cluny, purchased since

the

death of

M. du Sommerard,

its

late

proprietor.

These magnificent specimens were eagerly bought up by the French government, from a just appreciation of the merits of their talented and much-persecuted countryman.' At a sale at

Phillips's,

of Palissy-ware

belonging

to

M. Roussel, of

Paris, Mr. Marryat informs us that a very large vase,

*

en-

THE CONSTABLE MONTMORENCI KILLED.

75

exquisitely colored, of fruit, shells, fishes, and reptiles.

Others present colored pictures, in the most delicate of subjects taken from mythology or Holy

bas-relief,

The

Writ.

colors used

by Palissy were commonly

bright tints of yellow, blue, or gray

green, violet,

but less frequently,

enamel in

is

he used

also,

and brown.

His

;

hard, but he seems never to have succeeded

making

it

enamel of Lucca

so purely white as the

della Robbia.

During the ten years following Paris, ries,

his

settlement in

Bernard of the Tuile-

Palissy, familiarly called

that he exercised his genius as a naturalist

men

among

the

of taste and learning in the capital, and continued

actively the prosecution of his studies

and

same time

labored with his sons as a potter, at the

fields.

among

the hills

His philosophy grew yearly deeper and

wider, and the knowledge displayed in his publication

of the Trustworthy Receipt was

thought his

own way forward

to

left

behind, as he

maturer views.

This narrative should not omit

to chronicle the

of the great patron of Palissy, the Constable

death

Montmo-

There were two more bursts of civil war, and two more peaces between that of which we have already spoken and the Massacre of St. Bartholomew. During these wars Bernard continued quietly at work, renci.

and no man interrupted him. second war, however, he riched with

boys in

in festoons, with

relief,

mask

At

the beginning of the

lost his friend, the constable,

supporting

heads, on a

fijie

flowers

and

fruit

blue ground, and

snake handles, sold for £57 15s. a very curious candlestick, with perforated work and heads in relief, sold for £20 and ;

;

various figures and other small objects brought high prices. ?

PALISSY THE POTTER.

76

who was battle

brought with six wounds into Paris, from the

of

St.

he was then

Denis, in which, though

seventy-four years old, he had been fighting stoutly.

He

died on the next day, and received from the queen

funeral obsequies similar to those lavished upon princes

She paid

of the blood.

d'Aubigne

money

the

joyfully, the Sieur

counting the death of her controller

hints,

as one of the blessings of her

and an assurance

life,

The mourning was most

of success in her designs.

thorough in the hearts of old

state counsellors,

who,

deprived of the protecting shadow of the constable, no longer were assured that they might safely give free expression to their sentiments. In the year 1569, the Prince of

By an

the battle of Jarnac.

horse of

La Roche foucault,

his leg

bone appeared through

no heed

to the

his horse killed

was

splintered so

his boot

under him, and

years

old,

and

perished

battle,

was slaugh-

finally

He was

tered with a pistol-bullet from behind. thirty-nine

but paying

;

he led his troop into the

injury,

in

accidental kick from the

that the

had

Conde perished

as

but

Antony of

Navarre had perished, and as each member of the old triumvirate, the

the

Duke

of Guise, Saint

constable, had perished,

unhappily well suited Palissy, in the

of the

Tuileries.

to the

mean The

Andre and

by a death of violence,

temper of the times.

time, labored in the precincts

building

of the

palace

had

proceeded steadily, under the care of Delorme and Bullant,

and

it

rose

at

Louvre, which was then design of Pierre Lescot. Palissy,

was

the

no great distance from the itself

a

new

structure,

the

Lescot, of equal age with

leading architect of his

own day;

THE QUEEN

S

GROTTO.

Delorme and Bullant yielding very

77 precedence

little

him in reputation. There is a MS. in the Royal Library at Paris, enExpenses of the Queen Catherine of Medicis/ titled, to

'

among

in which,

expenditure for the year 1570, there

'To Bernard,

occurs note of a payment

Nicolas, and

Mathurin Palissys, sculptors in earth, of the sum of

two thousand earth,

hundred

six

baked and enamelled, which remained

for the completion of the (four bridges?

in

MS.

is

indistinct

at

part,

this

" quatre pons") which lead

menced

The

grotto here

works placed

by

in

is

rate,

upon

the

com-

near the Louvre ,

perhaps one of those island,

and approached

described by Bernard in his

We

account of the delectable garden.

any

the writing

agreement made with them.

named

way

be done

to within the grotto

a circular

bridges, in the



to

in

but appears to be

for the queen, in her palace

at Paris, according to the

works

livres, for all the

find

him, at

testimony of the manuscript, to

have been busily carrying

into effect

one of his

in-

genious garden plans within the Tuileries, in the year 1570.

In

Tuileries.

the

year 1572 Catherine abandoned the

Disgusted with her palace, by chimerical

predictions, she

bought for herself another home in

The Palace

the Hotel de Soissons.

of the Tuileries

continued to increase from time to time in after years,

under succeeding princes, but there remains

own day architects,

little

or no trace

Delorme and

planned upon a scale

of the work of

Bullant.

much

to its

our first

Their edifice was

larger than the present

building.

The year 1562,

in

which Catherine quitted the

78

PALISSY THE POTTER.

Louvre, (she was then fifty-three years old,)

Massacre of

date of the

survived

and

his quiet life

employment

his

He

doubtless sheltered him.

excesses of

in Saintonge,

men

'

If

he

royal service

in the

had said of the outrages

you had seen the

horrible

have seen during these troubles,

in

your head that would not have

trembled at the fear of falling

And

faith

I

that

you have not a hair malice.

Palissy

though he made no secret of his

it,

committed

Bartholomew.

St.

the

is

who has

to the

mercy of men's

not seen these things could

never think how great and horrible a persecution

The

cry of

is.'

Bleed them, bleed them, for the doctors

l

say a bleeding

is

August as

as good in

boast of the mechanic,

who

May

in

arm

displayed his

!

'

the

clotted

with blood to the shoulder, and proclaimed that he had thrust a

sword with

living bodies,

arm through

that

had no parallel

four hundred

in Saintes.

It is

happily

not necessary for this narrative to dwell upon the familiar story of the massacre.

two years afterwards,

in

May

of the year 1574, Charles

He was

IX. died at the age of twenty-five.

kins

whom new

king,

life

Henry

regarded by

vindictively

admired the

III.,

all

men

men

modestly well

to

as a very honest

men

Greek and

in Paris,

'

and a

man,

by some of rest despised

Latin,

Worker

man

old.

Huguenot,

as a

by the

in Paris, but

called himself

known

years

sixty-five

for his clear-sighted philosophy

as a mechanic ignorant of

He was

the accession

poor Potter, Master

the

watched by some

first scientific

well

On

of Palissy.

Bernard of the Tuileries, was

He was

the fourth

death had taken from the throne of France

during the vigorous of the

About

Palissy escaped.

who

did

in Earth.'

to patronize,

a saint's day. to talk about as

'

the poor Potter,

he had no fame in his luxurious

who bought

workshop, or the few true philosophy to

own

79 M. Bernard.' *

day, except

among

But the

the produce of his labor in the

men who had enough

know

in

them of

the value of his labor in the

fields.

*

Que direz-vous du pauvre meme roi parla un jour, &c.

Potier,

M. Bernard, a qui

— Confession de Sancy.

le

80

PALISSY THE POTTER.

CHAPTER

V.

PALISSY IN PARIS.

Concurrent with Bernard's

which he

that labor in the art of pottery

omitted to pursue, during

between the date of

all

may

It

at

no time

years of his

free

his discovery of white

the date of his decease.

was

other occupations,

life,

enamel and

be convenient to state

here, that after his death, the labor of his workshop

seems

to

have

been

continued

by

his

sons,

who,

possessing designs, moulds, and unfinished pieces to

them by

their father,

of their business.

left

used them in the prosecution

In this way,

easy

it is

to

account for

the existence of a plate in which the borders form a

pure specimen of Palissy- ware, while the painting in the centre represents

Henry

IV. and his family.

The

sons of Palissy, wanting their father's genius, feebly sustained the reputation of his ware

;

duce nothing comparable

father's

to

their

they could proexquisite

Whether they died, and took out of the world with them the mechanical secrets of their father's designs.

art, or

whether the wits of Palissy found bread for yet

another generation of descendants,

it is

now

impossible

THE CABINET OF NATURAL HISTORY.

The

to tell.

81

secret of Palissy soon perished, and of

the feeble efforts of his sons the history of art retains

no record. It

will

not be necessary to recur to the subject of

We

Bernard's labor as a potter.

mind, during the remainder of that Palissy, while last

years, as a

to

bear in

this narrative, the fact,

he became prominent, during

man

his

of science, was also laboring

We may

industriously in his workshop. fore, close this portion of it,

have only

now, there-

our subject, and append

by way of signature, the

Potter's

mark, as

it

to

was

graved, with a sharp point, by Bernard, on the produce

of his hands.*

It

has been seen already that Palissy was, for a long

time,

known by

those

who had any acquaintance

him, as a collector of natural curiosities. incidentally,

in

his

citizen of Rochelle,

'

He

Trustworthy Receipt/

named

l'Hermite,

a present of two foreign shells

;

with

speaks,

of

the

who made him

of Pierre Guoy, citizen

who found upon his farm a remarkable stone, and because he knew that Palissy was curious in such things, made a present of it to the Potter. We

of Saintes,

are told, in the

* The mark

on Pottery.

is

II.

the

Abbot of Turpenay,

copied from that given in Mr. Marryat's work

Mr. Marryat extracted

Musde Ceramique VOL.

same way, of

de S£vres,

6

by

MM.

from the Description du Brongniart and Riocreux.

it

PALISSY THE POTTER.

82

La Mothe Fenelon,

of

— a wily and

ambitious man, the same

wards sent over Massacre of

secretary to the King of Navarre

Bartholomew

who had made



after-

of England, the

to justify, to the court

St.

who was

as lovers of letters,

presents of natural curiosities to Ber-

'knowing,' as the Potter says, 'in very good

nard,

truth, that

was curious about such

I

Palissy

things.'

had, in fact, been forming, and possessed, in the year

1575, a cabinet of natural history, calculated to trate,

very

fully, the philosophic

he had, by that time, matured.

age of Palissy then being developed, fully, shall

his

to

the sixteenth century.

detail,

among

last

make proof of

Modestly sensible in

had

Potter

we

and which make good the philosophers of

of his

final results

and most important book,

and

their soundness,

subject his reasonings to the severest

guages

the

Before putting the

of his researches into his to

In the year 1575, the

sixty-six,

a very high rank

he wished

views of nature which

those views of nature which

all

have presently

title to

illus-

to

test.

ignorance of those

lan-

which was contained the learning of past

time, believing, nevertheless, that he had pushed on his

knowledge, as a

future, he desired to

some

points,

possible that for himself,

scholars

;

it

naturalist,

many

had

was

for

into

know whether he might

have deceived himself.

many

steps

It

not,

was

the

on

quite

which he had thought out a long time been familiar to the things,

quite possible, too, that positions which,

to his

mind, appeared incontrovertible, when exposed

to the

keen criticism of learned men, might easily be

controverted or destroyed.

Such things were

possible,

though Palissy was not wanting in a strong conviction,

THE CONCLAVE OF SCHOLARS. on

his

own

views were

part, that his

83

true.

If false,

they could not be too speedily demolished. true philosopher,

saw

a

in free discussion, strict inquiry,

and he resolved, there-

the true interests of science; fore, to invite

Palissy,

about him the most learned scholars and

physicians then residing in the capital, to meet them in

them

his

museum,

his

case as he went on, by specimens, rather than

to state to

his views,

and

illustrate

which he

pictures or descriptions, of the things about

spoke.

He

proposed to invite

diction,

and

discussion,

announced himself ready, inquiries at his

own

lectures

these

at

at

contra-

interruption,

all

times,

;

to

and

he

answer

house, and explain the specimens

in his collection.

Palissy himself the

was

it

year 1575 that he delivered his

which he proposed

lectures,

was

us,* that

tells

still

delivered Palissy

them

delivering

them

was

in

the

to

his

in the first

Lent of

course of

continue annually.

in

the

year 1584.f

The

museum.

collection

He He of

cabinet of natural history that

first

had been used more liberally than as a private hoard of curiosities in Paris

;

and

his

were the

upon natural history ever delivered

They were no # In the treatise

idlers to

'

On

whom

first

lectures

in that capital.

Palissy declared his

Stones.'

f In the Biblioteque de Sieur de la Croix Dumaine, published

in 1584,

it

is

said of Palissy,

philosopher, and

man

who

is

described as a

'

natural

of a remarkably acute and ready wit/

that he flourishes at Paris, aged sixty years

and more

(fifteen

more but he must have had a vigorous appearance, that would easily deceive the eye) he flourishes at Paris, and gives lessons in his science and profession. ;



'

PALISSY THE POTTER.

84 views, and of

whom

was assembled

in the Potter's cabinet

Science, a Royal

an Academy of

Society evoked for the

Bernard detailed the

occasion.

result of his original researches

and the best men of the capital were there his

There

he invited contradiction.

arguments, and subject

Bernard includes,

all

he said

to strict inquiry.

work, a

in his last

to discuss

list

some

of

who attended his first series of demonstrations, and who declared themselves convinced The philosoof the reasonableness of his opinions. of the chief persons

pher, vigorous of

mind and body,

at the

exhibited no trace of bodily decay; he

age of sixty-six

was

noted,

still

nine years afterwards, for his remarkably acute and

ready wit little

;

and

his age,

more than

sixty.

when The

from the furnace and the

was seventy-five, seemed vigorous old man, passing chamber, whose shelves were it

resplendent with the rich creations of his fancy, went into

cabinet,

his

and poured out the lessons he had

learned by the road-sides, by the sea-shore, and the

among

mountains, before a grave assemblage of men,

paled by study, or grown gray with years.

Ambroise Pare was among them. surgeon

to four kings.

He was

had been

to

our

own

his skill as a surgeon, in saving Charles IX.

the danger that ensued

first-

a sturdy Huguenot.

His fame as a scholar has descended

and

He

time

from

upon a clumsy lancet-wound,

caused him to be saved from the Massacre of

We

Bartholomew. with

the

Palissy.

chief

will

attendants

Ambroise

Pare,

Barber-Surgeons, was a buted

much

to

make

the

in

of

St.

acquaintance, briefly, the the

man who

lecture -room

body

of

of

Master

certainly

contri-

advancement of surgery

in

his

AMBROISE PARE.

own

was an unprofessional want of

day, though there

innovations

and

practice

in

creed,

made him an

among

the

now

men who

and

abuse

stout

create the noise in

Ligatures

place of the actual cautery.

universally employed,

vessels are tied

custom was

religious

in

an amputation, by the use of

the flow of blood, after

are

heresy

his

his

Pare introduced the method of arresting

a profession.

ligatures, in

together with

object of jealousy

and loud

little

taken

which,

dulness about him,

85

;

but,

burn them

to

the

in



sixteenth century,

and,

;

the spouting blood-

when Gaspar

the

Martin,

the brother-in-law of Pare, died, after an amputation

by Ambroise

performed

in

own way, a

his

great

triumph and exultation took place over the innovator.

Pare was, for three years, surgeon

to the

Hotel Dieu,

Between 1536 and 1543, he was surgeon

in Paris.

a troop of soldiers in the

He

army of Piedmont.

served as surgeon to companies under M. de

and

dauphin.

the

army at Landrecy. Mer with the army at the

Chateau Navarre

le ;

then

Rohan

was with the king's In 1545, he was at Boulogne-sur-

In 1544, he

against the English.

In 1552,

under M. de Rohan, he served in Germany

was

siege of Damvilliers,

by Henry

;

still

then he

II.,

and

then he was in Metz during the siege.

capture, having been

without ransom.

of St. Quentin battle of

;

Dreux,

made

prisoner of war,

In 1558, he

was

was

In its

sent

at the battle

in

1562, at the siege of Rouen, at the

in

which the Prince of Conde and the

constable were taken prisoners, and at Bourges.

was

at

Comte, under Antony, afterwards King of

1553, he was in another besieged town; and, on

home

to

at other battles of the civil wars,

and

He

at the siege

86

PALISSY THE POTTER.

During the Lent of 1575, he attended the

of Havre.

public demonstrations in

cabinet of Palissy the

the

Potter.

The mind

may now and

Palissy, in

of Ambroise Pare, in the lecture-room of

which he was

then have wandered to a contest

at that time

republication in a body of his

had often thought

it

engaged, touching the

own

surgical works.

He

prudent to evade the discredit that

attached, in his day, to bold views and innovations on

by publishing his tracts Thus Aparice had repre-

the practice of the ancients,

under

fictitious

sented

The

names.

of

'

C — Ambroise

'A. Pare,

doctors

'

medicine

in

Pare, Chirurgien.

had obtained a

Paris

decree in 1535, forbidding the publication of medical

books

they

until

had obtained the sanction of the

and they were opposing

faculty,

at that time the

in-

dependent publication of the surgical works of Master

Ambroise Pare.

ment before suit

Pare had brought his case for argu-

and therein the

the Court of Parliament,

between Master Etienne Gourmelen, Dean of

the Faculty of Medicine, and Master

Ambroise Pare,

Barber-Surgeon, remained undecided in the Lent of 1575.

By

the side of

Ambroise Pare, the surgical reformer

and the Huguenot,

and

sat his friend

collaborator, Master Richard Hubert,

according

Surgeon array,

in

to the

of

commonly

called,

usage of that time, Master Richard,

Ordinary

also,

less illustrious

to the

grave

King.

There was a goodly

physicians

lecture-room of Master Bernard.

assembled In the

first

in

the

place,

there were Master Francois Choisnin and Monsieur de la

Magdalene, both physicians

to the

Queen of Navarre.

CHOISNIN, M1LON AND OTHERS.

87

Francois Choisnin de Chatelleraut had become, only in the preceding year, licentiate of the Faculty at Paris,

upon Bernard's

and while attendant lectures,

was engaged

preparation

in

which he had engaged

that

year

theory of Periods in disease.

Of

of the

to sustain, this

of

series

first

thesis

upon the

Master Choisnin

Palissy speaks, in his last book, as a lover of philoso-

phy,

'

whose company and

visits

We

source of consolation.'

me were

to

a great

are told of a geological

excursion in which Palissy was accompanied, in this

year 1575, by Choisnin, and a young scholar cine, twenty-two years old,

named

Milon.

medi-

in

Milon also

attended the demonstrations in Bernard's cabinet.

was a in the

pupil of great promise,

who

year 1609, first-physician

lived to write a

He

afterwards became, to

Henry

IV.,

who

book about the colic of Poitou, and

to

be apostrophized as '

Tu Milo

doctissime

Qui cuncta vol vis mente perspicaci.'

There were attendant first

upon Master Bernard's

demonstrations, Alexandre de Campege, physician

Monsieur, the king's brother; Guillaume Pacard, a

to

physician from Burgundy also out of

a

also

thesis

ble

;

Philibert Gilles, a physician

Burgundy, whose mind was then revolving

upon Epilepsy; Germain Courtain, a venera-

man, who publicly taught the arguments of Palissy

concerning potable gold, as Doctor and Regent

Faculty of Medicine

;

Jean du Pont, and Messieurs

Drouyn, Clement, Misere, and de

from sundry

same

parts of France,

fraternity.

in the

Pierre

la Salle, physicians

and Pierre Pena, of the

Pena was an able

botanist,

88

PALISSY THE POTTER.

born of a noble house in Provence, whose horoscope

him from arms

diverted

to science.

He

studied with so

much good effect that he became secret physician to King Henry III., and left at his death a fortune of six hundred thousand livres. He and his fellow-student, Mawere doctors of Montpelier.

thias de Lobel,

much

of the world

;

he became physician

Lobel saw to

William,

Prince of Orange, practised at Delft and Antwerp, was physician and

'

botanographer'

and died a Londoner

in the

to

James

year 1516.

I.

of England,

In conjunction

with Mathias de Lobel, Pierre Pena had issued from the press of

London, three or four years before the

date of Bernard's lectures, a medico-botanical work, full

of research and erudition.*

course

— published

in

who saw

own

was



in Latin,

England, and dedicated

Elizabeth, probably because testants,

It

little

its

to

of

Queen

authors were both Pro-

hope of a calm hearing

in their

distracted country.

There were present

also at the lectures of Palissy,

Messieurs Paiot and Guerin, apothecaries of Paris, and the Marquis of Saligny in the Bourbonnois, Knight of the Order of the King.

Monsieur Dal Bene was there,

with his brother, the abbot, to

*

l

taque

whom

Ronsard dedicated

Stirpium adversaria nova perfacilis vestigatio, luculen-

priscorum praesertim Dioscoridis

ad

materiam medicam. Quibus propediem accedet 1

altera pars.

de Plantis appendix, de succis medicatis

antique

et

recentiorum

Qua conjectaneorum et metallieis seclio,

novatse medicinae lectiorum remediorum thesaurus

et

opulentissimus de succedaneis libellus continentur authoribus Petro Pena Purfoetii,

et

fol.,

Mathia de Lobel, Medicis.' 1570.

Londoni, Thorns

1

THE FRENCH ACADEMY.'

89

Monsieur, the brother of the abbot,

his Poetic Art.

was called a poet in his time, and there remains of him a Latin distich, founded on the miserable state of France, in which the shortness atones barely for the

want of special merit.*

There was present Jacques de

la

Primaudaye, of noble family

who had shared structions

also at the Potter's demonstrations

which gave *

rise to the publication,

The French Academy,'

year or two of the year 1575, with which

An

now concerned.

had received

Anjou,

with his brother Pierre in those in-

of a book called

is

in

into his

by Pierre, within a

this narrative

ancient gentleman of Anjou

house four youths, of

whom

the

Primaudayes formed two, and placed them under an accomplished teacher, who provided pleasantly the pith of university instruction, without

tediousness

the

and the waste of time, and words, and labor

detail,

that belonged

They

in

those days to a college education.

and Greek, moral philosophy and

learnt Latin

history

;

and the

results

of the lessons they received

formed the thick volume called

'

The French Aca-

demy,' of which an edition was dedicated,

month of February, 1577, de

of

Primaudaye.

la

to

Henry

Jacques de

la

III.,

in

the

by Pierre

Primaudaye, so

educated, was adding to his knowledge by attendance

on the discussion during

the

Lent

in

the cabinet of Bernard Palissy,

of the

year

present, also, Master Jean Viret, tician, then

*

l

1575.

an expert mathema-

about thirty-two years old

;

Master Michel

nunquam fait in sua commoda sua constanter commoda caeca ruit.

Gallia, quae

In

There were

5

constans,

90

PALISSY THE POTTER.

Saget,

man

a

of judgment and

Bartholomew, a other

experienced in the

prior,

men, lawyers,

learned

and

mathematician

—a

of

Ramee, by whom he had been chosen Antoine POisel, and did

in

act,

testamentary executor in the

arts,

with

priests

advocate, pupil

Master

;

and

scholars,

among them Nicolas Bergeron, scholar

good wit

classical

Pierre

la

act with

to

year 1568, as

the

founding of a public

chair of mathematics in the Royal College of France.

Such were

the

men who

what the Potter calls*

gathered around Palissy, in

my

'

little

Academy.'

Palissy

placarded his proposed course of three lectures and discussions

in

most frequented

the

parts

of

Paris,

charging a dollar for admission; and he promised, in

own

his

quaint, fearless

way,

to return four dollars for

every one that he received,

his

if

teaching should

His own account of

admit decisive contradiction.

the establishment of his lectures f and demonstrations

becomes doubly is

an account of the

heard

in Paris

when we

interesting,

— of

first

the

recollect that

it

natural history lectures ever

first

society established in Paris

advancement of science, by discussions among learned men, which were to be held in the for the pure

first

natural history

museum

ever thrown open in that

capital. i

I

considered,' Bernard says,

much

'

I

had employed

time in the study of earths, stones, waters, and

metals, and that old age pressed talents

that

which God has given

* In the Epistle

to the

to

me to multiply the me and for that ;

Reader, of his

f It occurs in the treatise

'

On

Stones.'

last

book.

LEARNING AND LATIN. reason, that

it

would be good

91

bring forward to the

to

bequeath them

light those excellent secrets, in order to

to posterity.

But, inasmuch as these topics are high

and comprehended by few men,

make

the venture until, in the

was

I

place,

first

I

in great trouble,

had ascerbecause

had never seen the opinion of philosophers, whether they might have

named '

to

more knowledge of them

tained whether the Latins had

than myself; and

have not dared

I

to

I

know

upon the above-

written

things.

should have been very glad to have understood

1

Latin, and to have read the volumes of the said philoso-

by some, and

phers, to be informed

my

others; and thus debating in

cause notices

be affixed

to

others, to

mind,

the

I

decided to

street

corners in

assemble the most learned doctors

Paris, in order to

and

at

to detect faults in

whom

I

in three lessons all that tains, stones, metals,

would promise I

have

learnt,

to

demonstrate

concerning foun-

And

and other natures.

in

order

none might come but the most learned and the

that

most curious,

I

put in

my

placards that none should

have admission without payment of a dollar for the entry to the said lessons

whether, by the help of

some

and

;

my

I

did that partly to see

hearers,

contradiction which might have

of truth than the arguments which

them

:

knowing

well,

that

if

I

I

I

more assurance might lay before

spoke falsely, there

would be Greeks and Latins who would

my

face,

I

me

to

should have taken from

each, as on account of the time to

resist

and who would not spare me, as well on

account of the dollar that

them

could extract

misspend

:

for there

I

should have caused

were very few of

my

92

PALISSY THE POTTER.

who could

hearers

not elsewhere have extracted profit at

my

they had found

me

out of something during the time spent by

why

I

say that

be speaking falsely,

I

should soon have been baffled

That

lessons. to

them

for

I

had put

is

my

in

if

placards, that if the things therein

promised did not prove trustworthy, the quadruple.

contradicted

me

witnesses, nor I

would restore

thanks be to God, never

man

Which being

con-

a single word. I

could not have more faithful

men more

assured than those in know-

and seeing

sidered,

ledge,

But,

I

that

have taken courage

to discourse

these things, well testified, in order that you

And,

doubt that they are trustworthy. yet the more assured about them,

to

all

may

not

make you

will give

I

you

to

you here

a catalogue of the noble, honorable, and most learned

men who were

my

present at

lectures (which

I

gave in

Lent of the year One Thousand Five Hundred and

the

Seventy-five), quality

I

could learn

be always ready

of

least

at

to

:

who

those

assured

whose names and

me

that they

bear testimony to the truth of

these things, and that they had seen stones and monstrous forms which

my

of

lectures

last

would

all

the mineral

you have seen

character

of

at

year One Thousand Five

the

Hundred and Seventy-six, which I have continued, order to obtain an increased number of witnesses.'

The

all

group which

the

in

surrounded

Bernard Palissy on these occasions we have already

The character Bernard, when they were

discussed.

opinion of such friends,

we

'

of

the

doctrines

supported

by the

in

good

took courage to discourse/

are about, in the next place, to examine.

were collected

which

They

a book, and published at Paris in the

93

THE LENT LECTURES.

year 1580, by Martin the younger, at the sign of the Serpent,

College

the

opposite

They

of Cambray.

represent the highest point attained by Palissy as a

By

philosopher.

have been brought look fairly

progress of three centuries

the

a position from which

to

down on

we can

the thick clouds of ignorance out

of which Palissy emerged, though

we

ourselves have

reached an atmosphere by no means cloudless. our advanced ground fairly

we

let

us endeavor

now

From

to look

back

on the science taught by the self-educated Potter,

and compare, as we can, the views of Master Bernard with the philosophy before

which

for

nine

years

known

represented

to

the

audience,

annually at

the

demonstrations in his cabinet the wisdom of the day.

Bringing the

opinions

contemporaries

modern

both

of Palissy

into

requisite

and those of

his

comparison with

science, let us attempt to ascertain what claim

the Potter had

tained from

upon the admiration which he has ob-

men

like BufFon, Haller,

and Jussieu.

94

PALISSY THE POTTER.

CHAPTER

VI.

THE NATURALIST PUBLISHES, IN A LAST BOOK, HIS

MATURED OPINIONS. Palissy published second and

last

his

known

year 1580, he being

and

third

to us with

at

last

book

certainty





the

in the

time seventy-one years

that

was dedicated by him to his ancient friend and patron, who was then probably still older than himself, the Sire de Pons, the same who had interfered on his old.

It

behalf,

and

assisted in procuring his liberation

prisons at Bourdeaux.

The

from the

de Pons, Count of

Sire

Marennes, had been admitted a knight of the order of the

Holy

promotion which took place in

Spirit at the

the year 1578. lord, the Sire

'

To

and very powerful

the very high

Antoine de Pons, knight of the orders of

the king, captain of a hundred

gentlemen, and his

majesty's very faithful councillor,' Palissy writes his dedication in the '

The number

manner following of

my

years gives

me

the boldness to

you that one day I was considering the color of my beard, which caused me to reflect upon the fewness of and the days which remain to me, to end my course

tell

:

that has led

me

to

admire the

lilies

and

the corn,

and

THE OLD MAN AND THE TALENT,

many

kinds of plants, whose green colors are changed

into white,

Many

when they

trees also

their vegetative

and natural virtues

to

me

has reminded

God, and hide the that better

man who

is

fruits.

have ceased

that

it

talent in the earth

the fool

who

:

also

;

a

written,

is

should take heed not to abuse the

that one

It is

are ready to yield up their

very soon look hoary when they feel

like consideration

1

95

gifts

it is

of

written,

hides his folly than the wise

conceals his wisdom.

therefore a just thing and reasonable/ Palissy

continues, dwelling on the spirit of that parable

which

formed the mainspring of

a just

his industry



'

it

is

thing and reasonable that each should seek to multiply

from God, following

the talent that he has received

His commandment.

Wherefore

into the light the things of to

give

which profit

it

we

I

have studied

which

it

to

bring

has pleased

God

understanding, according to the measure

has pleased

of posterity.

Him And

to

bestow upon me, for the

because many, under good

Latin or some other polished tongue, have set abroad

many

pernicious talents to mislead and cause the loss

of time to youth

:

forasmuch as a Geber, a Romaunt

Raymond Lully, and some disciples of Paracelsus and many other alchemists have set abroad books of a study by which many have wasted

of the Rose and a

time and

me

thrift.

Such prenicious books have caused

to scratch in the earth for the

and search among the

space of forty years,

entrails of the

same, in order

to

understand the things which she produces in herself,

and by such means

who has caused me been

to the

I

have found grace before God

to

understand secrets which have

present time

unknown

to

men, even

to the

PALISSY THE POTTER.

96

most learned, as any one contained

writings

some

will jest,

in

my

know

well

that

impossible for a

man

book.

that

it

is

I

have intelligence concerning the

destitute of Latin to

and they

;

understand from

this

and say

things of nature

may

say that

will

on

is

it

my

part great temerity to write contrary to the opinion of

many famous and

so

upon natural

written

with their wisdom.

by the

:

I

know

my

and

the

filled

whole world

also that others will judge

am

I

no more than a poor

and by such discourses they would cause

writings to be in

facts

outside, saying that

artisan

who have

ancient philosophers,

ill

my

In truth, there are things

received.

book which the ignorant

find

will

it

hard

to

believe. '

Notwithstanding

ceased of in

all

to

pursue

my

monstrous, that

I

I

I

have not

to cut the

thread

have arranged a cabinet,

many

have put

I

and

enterprise,

calumny and delusion

which

earth,

these considerations

all

things

noteworthy and

womb

have taken from the

which bear certain witness

to

my

of the

teachings, and

man will be found who will not be constrained to own that they are trustworthy, after he shall have seen

no

the things that

assurance faith in

to

my

I

have prepared

all

who would

those

writings.

my

in

cabinet, to give

not otherwise

If there should

chance

to

put

come

one blockhead, who would not accept the evidence placed in

my

cabinet,

I

would require no other judg-

ment than your own, which and overturn oppose

it.'

alt

the

The good

been indeed a

is

opinions old

Sire

sufficient to

of those

convince

who would

de Pons must have

giant-killer in debate, if this

were so

but Bernard speaks not in flattery, but in the partiality

ANTOINE SIRE DE PONS.

97

of friendship to his ancient patron.

I

he says, 'and without any flattery

speak

I

it

in

for

inasmuch

had good proof of the excellence of your

wit, since

truth,'

as

'

:

when you returned from Ferrara*

the time

chateau of Pons

so

;

it

is

to

that, in these later

which you have been pleased!

to

speak

me

to

your

days in

of divers

and other

sciences, to wit, of philosophy, astrology,

arts

drawn from mathematics that I say has caused me to double the assurance and conviction of your marvellous ;

ability

though number of days causes

;

diminution of the

memory, yet

so

it is

in

many

learnt

by

the conversations

hold with

me

that there

is

;

and

ing well that while

fitly

it

accounted a rare thing.

how

by you

And

it

if

will

to

will

I

receive

humble

whom my

be prized and it

any

you

will

know

well

to

and having such

:

do

me

this

honor,

as from the hand of one of your very

servants.'

The book containing

#

to

substance of the matter and excuse

pray you very humbly it

have thought

there be in

the too rude language of the author

hope,

have

dedicated than to you, know-

ill-polished, or ill-arranged,

to extract the

I

might be esteemed by some as a

fable full of falsehoods,

words

I

world

in the

This

has pleased you to

it

for these reasons

no seigneur

work could be more

which

have found

that I

yours augmented rather than diminished.

people

He had

thus dedicated to the Sire de Pons, and

the

mature

relations there.

fruit

of the

studies

of

the

Jacques, father of Antoine Sire

de Pons, had; married Catharine of Ferrara.

Antoine himself

married Anne de Parthenay, daughter of the Seigneur de Soubise.

VOL.

II.

7

PALISSY THE POTTER.

98 naturalist,

bears

following

the

title

*

:

Admirable

i

Discourses on the Nature of Waters and Fountains, as well

natural as artificial

on Stones, on Earths, on Fire and on

Salt-springs,

useful

many

With

Enamels. natural

on Metals, on Salts and

;

Things.

and

Also,

other

A

of

on Marl, very

Treatise

who

necessary for those

in Agriculture.

Secrets

excellent

are concerned

The whole drawn up

in Dialogues,

wherein are introduced Theory and Practice.

By M.

Bernard Palissy, Inventor of Rustic Figulines

to

King, and to the at Paris, in

the

at

Queen

his mother.

5

It

was published

one volume octavo, by Martin

sign of the

the

le

jeune,

Serpent, opposite the College of

Cambray. All the theories of Palissy were founded upon, and tested by, experiment

and observation.

upon nature, founded upon any other ducts of the

something opposite

basis,

name

mind, under the

Speculations

pure pro-

Theory, as

of

to practical investigation,

rations out of Latin into Latin,



elabo-

— Bernard seldom omits

any occasion to discourage. His own lessons were learned by a process much more wholesome, and produced in him a robust and healthy intellect. To

*

'

Discours Admirables de la nature des eaux

et fontaines,

tant naturelles qu'artificielles, des metaux, des sels et salines,

des pierres, des terres, du feu et des

emaux

autres excellents secrets des choses naturelles.

de la marne, l'agriculture.

fort utile et necessaire

Le

tout

dresse

avec plusieurs Plus,

un

traite

a ceux qui se mellent de

par dialogues, es quels sont

Par M. Bernard Palinventeur des rustiques figulines du Roy, et de la Royne

introduits la theorique et la practique. issy,

;

sa mere.'

99

THE 'ADMIRABLE DISCOURSES.' the readers of his book,

has concluded

whom

he addresses after he

dedication to the

his

de

Sire

Palissy expresses in stout terms this feeling.

most especially essential,

Pons,

was

It

a day when study of the

in

works of nature was but young upon the wing, weak as a

fly,

among

and making

cobwebs

the

in

its

inexperience rash tours

which Palissy so earnestly ex-

to

horted application of a broom. '

Friend reader,' he says,

the

'

desire

have that

I

you may profit by the reading of this book, has incited me to warn you that you should take heed against the weakening of your wit over sciences written in the chamber by the prompting of a theory either imaginative or picked out of some book written from the imagination of those

who have experience

in nothing,

and take heed how you believe the opinions of those

who say and maintain that theory has engendered They who teach the like doctrine assume practice. an argument ill founded when they say, that one must imagine and figure the thing one desires the

mind before putting a hand

man

to the

could compass his imaginations

their side

and opinion

:

but

it

compass

to

I

business.

in If

would be of

must needs be

that if

mind could be executed, the bellows-blowers* of alchemy would do great things,

things conceived in the

and would not waste, as many have done,

upon a search *

Souffleur

;

if

'

an alchemist. I 'have of the matter, but imagine a theory, in

suggesting that our phrase, 'he

a

man

cannot get what he

sibly be traced

up

years

theory figured to the mind of chiefs

was a name given

experience in nothing

fifty

to

may

is foolish

whistle for

it,'

used when

in expecting, might pos-

to the bellows of the alchemist.

PALISSY THE POTTER.

100 in

war could be reduced a

lose *

to practice,

they would never

battle.

who

venture to say to the confusion of those

I

hold

such an opinion, that they could not make a shoe, nor

knew all the theories in would ask those who hold such an opin-

even a stocking-heel, the world. ion, if

I

if

they

they should have studied

years in books of

fifty

cosmography and navigation of the sea, and should have maps of all the regions and the lead, the compass and the astronomical instruments, would they

for all

would

that undertake to guide a ship to all countries as

be done by a

man

of good experience and practice

they would shrink from putting themselves into danger,

whatever amount of theory they might have learnt

and when they should have well discussed the matter, they would of necessity confess that practice source of theory.

I

have put

the

is

this proposition foremost,

mouth of those who say, how is it possible a man can know anything and speak of natural

to close the

that

without having seen the Latin books of the

effects,

Such a proposition is in because by experiment I prove

philosophers apposite,

places false,

that

my

?

the

theory

of

in several

philosophers

several

renowned and as any one may see and hear in

even of the most

ancient,

two hours, provided that he

come and

see

my

cabinet,

is

most

the

less than

take the trouble to

will

in

case

which

may

be seen

wonderful things that are put there for witness and proof

of

my

writings,

arranged

stages, with certain writings

every one

may

to assure

you (reader)

be able

in

order,

under them,

to instruct

or

by

in order that

himself: being able

that in very

few hours,

that

is

THEORY AND PRACTICE. to

say in the

first

101

day, you will learn more of natural

philosophy in as far as

it

concerns the subjects treated

book, than you could learn in

in this

years by

fifty

reading the theories and opinions of the ancient philosophers.

and say, heaven

Some enemies of science mock at astrologers Where is the ladder by which they got up to

to find

place

this

out the situation of the stars

am exempt

I

from

arguments

and the touch

the sight, the hearing

:

for

the calumniators will have

no ground of

my

case

when you

me

in

:

my

you

as

little

will find

academy.

These addresses formed the book,

press,

As

the

earnest-minded

*

the only prefatory matter to

:

such vanities old Bernard had

thought suggested

author,

'

to the other prefatory matter. to press,'

several people have requested

me

them, in order that they might have understanding of to write

itself to the

and a short notice was ap-

Since the book has been put

nard,

well.'

volume was passing through the

new

however, a

pended

own in come to see

their

which appeared without any of the usual

recommendatory verses outlived.

content

I

which reason

shall

Fare thou

in

of ridicule

that kind

my written

because in the proof of

But

?

difficult parts,

what follows

:

adds Berread

to

more

it

certain

which has induced

me

printing

to wit, that if after the

of the said book, there should be any one

to

who

does

not content himself with having seen the things privately in writing, and desires to have pretation, let

him

him

the place of

at all times

and he

repair to the printer,

my

ready

herein contained.

an ample

to

abode, in which

I

shall

inter-

will tell

be found

read and demonstrate the things

PALISSY THE POTTER.

102 1

Also,

if

any one should wish

to

establish a foun-

according to the design here given, and should

tain,

be unable author,

I

to

will

understand clearly the meaning of the

make a model

easily understand is

It

the

what

is

him, by which he will

for

here written.'

same Bernard

The uncaged energy

still.

with which the Potter, in his old age, labors for the interests

of science, and

mind with which he follows object,,

the

work

beautiful

made him

his

manhood, and

acceptable meat for

when he hungered and grew

in Saintes.

simplicity of

the directest path to a good

remind us of the struggles of

eccentricity that

gossips

the

lean over his

WELLS WITHOUT WATER.

CHAPTER DOCTRINES OF PALISSY

103

VII.

WATER AND WATER-WORKS

\

MEDICINAL AND THERMAL

VOLCANIC AC-

SPRINGS

TION.

1

Theory commences '

:

*

I

found myself, some time

ago, (while wandering over the fields,) very thirsty,

and passing by some

village

asked where

I

could

I

meet with a good spring, in order to refresh myself; to which it was replied to me that there was no spring in that place,

and

that their wells

on account of the drought, and but a

muddy water

little

the

exhausted,

all

that there

me much

This caused

wells.

at

were

was nothing

bottom of the said

and

vexation,

was

I

greatly surprised at the distress suffered by the inhabitants of this village through the

then there

you long

came

to

my memory

a promise

since,

to

show me

what way fountains

might be established

in

you (according

to

in

places the

Therefore now since

water.

we

your promise)

most

have an inheritance is

nothing in

like others.'

in it

made by

destitute of

are at leisure, to instruct

science which will be extremely useful to

there

And

want of water.

me me

I

beg

in this :

for

I

which there are no springs, and but a well liable to

become dry

104

PALISSY THE POTTER.

To

this invitation

natural and easy tion of his

and

Practice

'

way

replies

'

and thus

;

commences

Palissy

in

a

the enuncia-

views concerning different kinds of water,

the theory of springs.

He commences with

We

wells and pumps.

of his begins,

a statement of objections against

him

shall find

comments

with

therefore,

to those

upon well-water

which have been supplied

two or three years by our own

to us within the

last

Sanitary Board.

Although

France, three centuries

in

ago, wells were sunk clumsily, skilled

and pumps

for

workmen were

deep wells were expensive, un-

wieldy, and extremely liable to disrepair, confessed, that in paving the tions

close

the

dialogue advocating surface-drainage, and he

extremely similar

rare,

at

of an

way

own

sugges-

Palissy

rather

for his

improved water-supply,

must be

it

overstates the case against existing methods.

Very princes scale

works had been suggested

costly

and seigneurs

water-supply

for

by the agency of pumps

Palissy tells us, there

was a

little

which very often absolutely

much money is

in repairs.

We

;

to

many

on a large

and while he wrote,

mania

failed,

for such works,

and always cost

know now what

precaution

required to prevent the clogging with sand or

mud

we know

the

difficulty that

would be occasioned by the passage

into

them of

and we know how

of the pipes that dip into a stream

of the

air

;

material

adjust the bore

to

the

to

;

adapt the strength

hydrostatic

pressure, and to

and inclination of the whole system of

water-pipes with mathematical exactness. lations in or about the *year

duties of a civil engineer.

Such calcu-

1850 form a part of the

To

the contemporaries of

COSTLY PUMPS, Bernard Palissy,

105

year 1580, such calculations

in the

were almost unknown.

The rude machineiy in

that

mines and ships was

The

purposes.

and suckers,

insufficiently

adapted

new

to

upon water-wheels and tubes

friction

in

had been long employed

the case of all

works upon a large

scale, tended rapidly to the destruction of the appara-

Mud and

tus.

w ould and r

air

and water- works of

nature were in consequence

this

most costly undertakings.

The wretched

pointed out. his

This

Bernard saw and

state

of industrial art in

own day being remembered

and afterwards the the

did get into the pipes,

civil

were

to

if

we

war

for the

in Italy,

wars, had almost extinguished

race of enterprising

surprised



artisans

— we

shall

not be

Bernard speaking as though pumps

find

remain unimproved.

He

admires their use in

mines, and values them for the additional safety they secure to ships.

pumps/ he

much

;

says,

'

I '

do not despise the invention of

but on the contrary

and whoever invented them,'

been Ctesibus, about 120 years

(it is

b. c.)

esteem

I

said to

.

.

.

esteem the invention of the said pumps lously great,

and know

have

did so after

*

great consideration, and not without reflecting

anatomy of the human body.

upon the

And to

while

that they will be at all times in

that for domestic wells they will be is

I

be marvel-

request and useful both to ships and mines, yet so

because there

it

little

it

is

in request

always need of workmen

in

;

the

neighborhood, on account of fractures occasioned by different kinds

of violence, and there are very few

men who know how to repair them.' The foresight of Palissy certainly

failed

him

in this

106

PALISSY THE POTTER.

portion of his subject.

Domestic pumps continued

to

be alike clumsy and costly for more than a century

and of course,

after the year 1580,

also,

they did not

extensively supplant the ordinary springs and drawwells.

In

our

own day we

them

find

threatened with banishment from

many

books can prevail on urban populations themselves surface-water, and supply

it

in

use,

towns, to

if

but blue

procure for

to all

houses at

high pressure. Paiissy had a

evidently

is

little

malice in his composition.

He

not fond of the queen's architect, Philibert

Delorme, who was associated with Butlant

in the found-

ing of the Tuileries, and took the lead, by virtue of

more assuming ways. In reputation as an architect, Delorme yields to no French contemporary except Pierre Lescot, and superior genius, superior wealth, and

takes a questionable precedence of Bullant.

In prac-

tice

he was probably the most prosperous architect of

his

own

day.

He

governed the works of Catherine

of Medicis at the Tuileries, at Anet, Saint Fosses, St. Cloud, and elsewhere.

As

Maur des

worked at the gardens of the Tuileries, and Delorme had a taste for garden architecture and original ideas on Paiissy

water-works, the Potter doubtless found himself subject to

more interference than he

liked,

lorme's affectations of superiority. at

first

and resented De-

Delorme had met

with serious mishaps in the watering of the

famous Garden of Meudon, Charles of Lorraine.

for the

Cardinal Guise,

His works, modified subsequently

by Mansard and Le Notre, have made Meudon famous. It is to this

enterprise that Paiissy alludes in dwelling

with malicious pleasure on Delorme's early mischances.

THE WATER-WORKS OF MEUDON. 1

know/ he

I

architect

says,

God

be styled the

has been a French

who almost caused

our time,

in

there

that

'

make

to

way

his

been councillor and almoner of St. Eloy les Noyon, of 1

happened

it

himself to

of Masons or of Architects; and

inasmuch as he possessed twenty thousand and knew how

107

to

St.

that he boasted

in benefices,

at court

'

— (he

had

Charles IX., was abbot

Serge by Angers, &c.)



sometimes of being able

make water rise as high as it pleased him by means of pumps or machines, and by such self-assertion he to

induced a great lord

wish

to raise the

water

high garden which he had near the said

river.

commanded the cost

caused

to

money

that

to

a

He

should be paid over to meet

which being accorded, the said architect

:

to

be

made a

and certain wheels

number of leaden pipes, river, to cause the movement

great

in the

of the mallets by which the suckers are set

But when

this

came

to raise the water, there

in

action.

was not a

pipe that did not burst, because of the violence of the

enclosed with the water

air

.lead

was

with

all

too

;

then having seen that the

weak, the said architect commanded that

diligence there should be cast pipes of brass,

upon which work were employed a great number of founders, in such wise that the expense of these things

was

so great, that

it

has been found by the papers of

the controllers to have

amounted

francs, although the result

Soon afterwards, another occasion 1

If

play

forty

thousand

was not worth anything.'

same

essay,

Palissy finds

critic against the

Masons' God.

the

who had visited and command over

Monsieur the queen's architect,

Italy, all

to

in

to

and who had gained authority

the artisans of the said lady' (all the artisans,

and

PALISSY THE POTTER.

108 Palissy

was one of them),

*

natural philosophy, without

had only had ever so

any

caused some wall or arcade

letters,

he would have

made

across the

and thereby have brought

valley of St. Cloud,

water gently from the bridge of walls,'

be

to

little

St.

Cloud

to the

his

park

&c.

In the works of Ronsard there

is

cerning Philibert Delorme which

an anecdote con-

illustrates the char-

acter of the great architect, and the temper of authority

and command which before which the

ill

spirit

was certainly not day was about to pass

ries

became a man of

and

genius,

of Master Bernard of the Tuilelikely to submit.

Ronsard one

into the Tuileries in the suite of

when Delorme caused the door face. The Sieur de Sarlan caused it

the queen-mother,

to

be shut in his

to

be immediately opened

to

him, and Ronsard, entering,

took up a piece of chalk, and wrote in capitals upon

and

the door, before the face of the church pluralist

Fort Reverent Habe.

architect, to

Habe, equivalent

Have, was a term of reproach, meaning a meagre

person,

'

a wrinkled or scraggy old woman,' as the

dictionary has

and the term probably applied with

it,

some force to the person of the architect, while Very Reverend might be applied sarcastically to clerical revenues, or to his overbearing claim

ence.

It

will

the his

on rever-

have been observed that Palissy speaks

of the architect always as

'

commanding.'

Delorme,

offended by Ronsard's inscription, brought his complaint before the queen to

answer

;

but the offender, being

for himself, informed her majesty that

he had written was not a scurrilous reproof.

summoned

'

Fort Reverent

Habe

insult,

what

but a delicate

are not French words.

Madame, Ausonius

109

commencement of a

verse out of

but the :

prosperity

whom

A GREAT MAN AGGRIEVED.

Fortunam

— words

re ve renter

— Be

habe

by

profitable to be read

modest

in

men

to

all

fortune has been kind/

Palissy then having stated the mechanical objection

against pumps, and taken occasion thereby to ease his

mind by administering a passing rebuke or two proud Philibert Delorme, proceeds

He

ent qualities of well-water.

water in stone wells that the difference

is

out that the

points

to

become

points out that wells in towns filth

through the

that pasvses

which subsisted long

by the

— a popular

strife

after his time,

injured

He

Fie speaks of the

soil.

poisoning of wells in seasons of

and

the differences in the

through which the rain-water has percolated.

soil

by

to discuss the differ-

better than that in others,

owing

is

to the

error

and was supported

the evidence of grave historians.

Palissy himself

memoir of Jean He relates that during the war which the Sleidan. Emperor Charles V. waged against the Protestants, refers for authority to the

historical

'

several wells and

man was

who

taken

far country

confessed to having

come from a

doing of

this

wicked

by the command of two great per-

whom

I

will not

comment relates an workmen who were tells

waters were poisoned, and that a

expressly for the

deed, and this sonages,

still

name/

He

then without

instance of the death of several sent

down

to

repair a well,

and

a legend of a physician, who, being in want of

money, drugged

all

the wells in his

come

own

town, and

him with stomach-aches, and be cured, to their great joy, by a precious medicine, which was, in fact, good wine, they being at the same time forbidden to drink any water.

caused people

to

to

110

PALISSY THE POTTER.

Against shallow pool-water, Bernard produces the obvious objections.

Against the water gathered in

deep pools for domestic use, according prevalent in

Normandy and

on a green coat, and

is

it

apt after a time

become unwholesome.

to

Being about

Closed cisterns he considers preferable. then

by

pass from

to

Theory'

'

fault with the

a practice

to

elsewhere, Palissy objects

only that as the water stagnates, to put

waters to fountains, he

still

all

is

that to find fault with fountains

is

warned to find

works of God.

You reprove me before I speak/ he answers. I know well that the sources of natural fountains are made by the hand of God but that is no reason why *

'

;

I

should not speak of the faults committed in conduct-

ing the waters from their natural sources

who conduct

as they

may commit

towns, and castles, subject will

upon which

contemplate a

I

inasmuch

the springs through pipes, chan-

and aqueducts from the source

nels,

:

mean

little

to

the houses,

great faults, that

...

to speak.

is

If

the

you

the vestiges and antiquities of

our predecessors, you will find a number of ancient

pyramids constructed as well by the as by the kings of Egypt;

you

will

Roman emperors find also a great

number of triumphal arches constructed in the time of the Caesars, as you have seen two triumphal arches in the

town of Xaintes, which, though they have been

founded

in the waters,* yet are

still

erect;

and one

cannot deny that they are of the time of the Caesars, as the writing that

is

upon them witnesses.

begun with speaking about *

Compare

this, in

vol.

i.

I

have

order to show you

p. 99.



WELLS

NATURAL FOUNTAINS.

POOLS

Ill

that although our predecessors incurred also great ex-

pense for their aqueducts, pipes, and the beauty of

you could not show me a single ancient fountain as you can show the buildings of triumphal arches, palaces, and amphi-

their fountains, yet so

theatres

and

:

it

is,

must not on

it

that

that

account be thought

that our ancient predecessors did not study

and spend

great cost as well on fountains as on other buildings,

proof that they did so, some one has assured

and

in

me

that

he has seen

in length (a

in Italy

aqueducts of

fifty

leagues

most incredible thing) which were made

for bringing water out of

one place

Our

to another.

how well they knew that waters brought by aqueducts come more at their ease than It is certain that those which come enclosed in pipes. show by

ancients

at

that

Xaintes (which

still

is

an ancient town,

in

which are

found the remains of an amphitheatre and

antiquities,

many

likewise a great quantity of coins of the

emperors) there was an aqueduct, of which the vestiges remain, by which they caused the water to

come from

a distance of two great leagues from the said town,

and nevertheless,

its

ruin has been so complete, that

now few men who understand the vestiges of above-named aqueduct. That is why I have said,

there are the

that although the ancients used better material than the

moderns, and although they cared

less

about cost, yet

there are no ancient fountains to be found.

mean it is

say that

to

well

Xaintes

known

is still

we have

lost their

in

which

do not

water sources

that the ancient spring of the

on the spot

I

it

:

for

town of

formerly existed

which the Chancellor PHopital turned out of his way (returning from the journey to Bayonne) to admire

to see

PALISSY THE POTTER.

112

There are

the excellence of the said spring.

certain valleys, between the town

still

in

and the spring, some

arcades over which the waters of the said spring were

made

to pass

the

:

however unknown wish

meaning of

common

to the

know why

to

I

arcades in the valleys,

the said arcades being

before

place it

show

to

is

And

people.

if

you

your eyes these to

you

the igno-

rance of the moderns/ Palissy proceeds accordingly to a comparison be-

tween these aqueducts and the water-pipes of about two inches diameter running underground up and down hill,

always containing enclosed

air,

frequently bursting,

by root-fibres, which penetrate between or by the deposit of stony matter from the

often clogged the joints,

He

water.

refers

to

the

famous Pont de Gard,

Languedoc, which was made tween two mountains water

to the

to

span the valley be-

purpose of conducting

for the

town of Nimes.

He

system of water-supply for which

and then touches upon the

in

failure

admires the grand

Rome

is

celebrated,

of Delorme in the

water-works which he had undertaken at

St.

Cloud.

Palissy then teaches the reason of the great differ-

ences that exist in the character and quality of springs. It is

impossible, he says, that water can pass through

the earth without taking

contains

;

which the

up from

and as there are vary both as

salts

it

various salts that

different kinds of earth in to quantity

and kind, these

differences will be represented in the waters. never,' he says,

'

:



I

have

seen a stranger come into the region

of Bigorre to dwell there

wards a fever

it

who

did not take soon after-

one sees in the said region a great

number of men and women who have

the throat as

SNOW-WATER.

GOITRE large as two

and

fists;

waters have caused their malady, whether the minerals through

by

their coldness or

13

a certain thing that the

is

it

1

be by

it

which they

have passed.' alternative of coldness in the water as a cause

The

of goitre Bernard adopts from Pliny,* whose natural

upon another point

history he quotes

The

sentence.

suggestion that

it is

in the

succeeding

caused by matter

taken from the earth and held by the water in suspension or solution,

is

the theory of Palissy himself, and

He

doubtless the correct one.

example of the

adduces goitre as an

effect of waters altered in quality

'

by

The

the minerals through which they have passed.'

old belief that goitre, Derbyshire-neck, or, as physi-

cians call

bronchocele,

it,

is

produced by the use of

snow-water, although not yet by any means dead,

was

yielding before a theory which Palissy the

man

first

ease

Our own phrase

to suggest.

— Derbyshire-neck — There

much.

is little

where we

the south of England,

In Scotland, where there In Greenland,

plaint.

snow-water, there

is

is

in

be seen.

find goitre

snow, goitre

where

all

no goitre

who

the mountains, and

and the

is

ii.,

cap. 37.

and Vitruvius,

VOL.

II.

common.

a rare com-

and there

is

snow

is

at the greatest height

depend most

is

is

a

never

a good deal of the

directly

glaciers, are precisely the people

* Lib. tarch,

live

very

the water in use

at all,

In Switzerland there

disease, but they

for the dis-

Derbyshire, and in

great deal of goitre in Sumatra, where to

certainly

discredits the old notion

snow-water

is

upon

on the snow

among whom

Palissy read in translation Pliny, Pluall

of

8

whom

he quotes upon occasion.

114 is

it 1

PALISSY THE POTTER.

An

not found.

able Swiss physician*

Bronchocele appears

to

me

to

tells

us:

be produced by certain

waters which issue from the hollows of rocks, trickle

along the

cliffs

of mountains, or spring from the bowels

of the earth.

That

some fountains

in

this

is

my own

the case

may

I

instance

country, the use of whose

waters will in eight or ten days produce or augment goitrous

(Hameau de Thuet)

village

free

Such of

swellings.

the

inhabitants

of

my

as avoid these waters are

from goitre and cretinism.'

Another authority of

equal weight informs us that the pump-water of the

lower streets of Geneva brings on goitre very speediiy-

Palissy proceeds further to prove the existence in the earth of salts and other matters,

by the instances of

petroleum, of bitumen, of sulphuretted waters, and of

waters tinted with the hue that belongs to the rocks

Theory declares himarguments, and wishes to

from which they have issued. self to be contented with his

understand the cause of thermal springs.

Palissy im-

mediately, with a wonderful correctness of perception, ascribes those

phenomena

to the

same cause which

produces earthquakes and volcanoes.

The

theory of the earth, by which

a molten mass, cooling

at the

it

is

regarded as

surface while

it

flies

through space, was born long after the time of Palissy,

and

still

exists.

The most

own day has shown

Bally, quoted in

Medicine. the

same

The next authority.

the

that

according to the theory * Dr.

philosophic geologist of our

is

required

incompatible with the solidity

Forbes's

writer

central heat

is

Cyclopaedia of Practical

Dr. Coindet, quoted through

EARTHQUAKES AND VOLCANOES.

much more

of the surface, and suggests the doctrine that

may

'

instead of

an

changes constantly going on

in the

electricity,

which

to

is

we

chemical

earth's crust

the general effect of chemical combination

and

rational

original central heat,

perhaps refer the heat of the interior

tion of heat

115

for

;

the evolu-

in their turn

become

new chemical changes.'* knew nothing of the heat generated by chem-

sources of Palissy ical

combination, and was compelled to seek through

some

his experience for

cause of internal heat

first

He

that lay within his comprehension.

suggested as a

cause the falling or friction of one rock upon another in the

neighborhood of a bed of sulphur, coal, peat, or

bitumen

;

communicated

thus a spark might be

flammable material, and a combustion would

way

be set up that would continue while

terial

to

The water

feed upon.

that

it

to in-

in this

found ma-

passes

the

in

neighborhood of these beds would become heated, but not without producing great

disturbance, for

meeting underground of water, to the

air,

and

fire



the

to

in truth,

expansive force of steam and gases, although he

was not able

to

Palissy ascribed

grasp clearly the whole of his idea all

earthquakes.

quakes and volcanoes

— of

His doctrine on earth-

which the true theory





is

at

the best that

human

genius could have suggested in the year 1580.

Prob-

this

hour open

to conjecture

ably the sudden expansion

compressed

into

is

of gases

had been

a liquid form plays a large part in

producing the volcanic phenomena.

and

that

fire/ as Palissy

would say, go

Certainly to the

# Lyell's Principles of Geology.

i

water

making of a

PALISSY THE POTTER.

116 volcano,

we may draw any

if

conclusion from the fact

that almost every existing volcano

hood of an

rule are in the

Fragua

;

The few

existing coast.

New

World,

Jorullo, Popocapetl,

geographical miles from the sea

mountains

exceptions to this

and

more than 80, 132, and 156

respectively not

the Celestial

in the neighbor-

is

;

and the volcanoes of

These

in Central Asia.

last

are situated in the basin of the continental streams,

where to the

rivers flow into a multitude of lakes instead of

ocean.

How wonderfully all

the speculations of Palissy

this subject struck into the right

how own

far

upon

path towards truth, and

he had gone beyond the speculations of his

time,

it is

due

to his

memory

understand.

to

In

the year 1850, one of the best works devoted to the

study of natural history* contained the statement

lowing '

fol-

:

The

real cause of volcanic

a great measure, involved

have been proposed

phenomena

as yet, in

is

Two

in obscurity.

theories

account for the phenomena;

to

one, that they are due to the expansion and oscillation

of melted matter in the earth's interior

;

the other (that

proposed by Sir H. Davy), that the elementary earths

and

alkalies in their metallic states,

with water

infiltrated

commence a chemical

coming

immediately

through fissures, action,

in contact

and hence arises

sequence a great expansion of volume

;

in con-

whilst the

expansive force of vapor or gas, produced during the process of decomposition, increases the tension of the liquefied substance, until

it

acquires sufficient strength

* Johnston's Physical Atlas.

THE POWER OF STEAM.

117

overcome the resistance of the superincumbent mass, upheaves the solid earth, and finds for itself a permato

nent

The mineral composition formed from

outlet.

ma-

lava emitted, differs according to the nature of the terials

of which the lava

is

in the interior, the rate at

the

formed, the degree of heat

which the molten mass

cooled down, and the amount of pressure to which

it

is

has

been subjected.' In the year 1580 Palissy wrote the following opinion 1

first

:

Earthquakes cannot be engendered unless place

historians

fire,

water and

Some

do come together.

air

certain

that in

relate

in the

countries there

are

earthquakes which have lasted for the space of two years (a thing very easy to believe), and that can hap-

pen by no other means than the above named. necessary that before

the

earth

It

is

can tremble, there

should be a great quantity of one of those four matters (sulphur, coal, peat or bitumen) in combustion,

and

being in combustion that

way

it

some receptacles of water

should have found in in the rocks,

and

its

that the

heat should be so great as to have power to cause the

and then

boiling of the waters enclosed in the rocks,

from the

fire

the waters

and the enclosed

be engendered a vapor that

will

come

air there will

by

its

power

upon them.

And

to lift

rocks, lands

and houses

inasmuch as

the violence of the fire, the water

air, will

be unable

so great a mass,

ing

it

give a

will

it

that shall be

to cast to the

will

cause

it

to

and the

one side or the other quake, and in quak-

produce some subtle openings, which

little

air,

which otherwise

will

and by such means the violence by all

would have been overthrown

is

PALISSY THE POTTER.

118 pacified

for if the

;

trembling did not get a there

matters which cause

three

air

little

during their action,

no mountain so heavy that

is

overthrown, as

it

the

it

could not be

has occurred in several places that

mountains have by earthquakes been converted into valleys,

and valleys

Would you have me which

I

mountains by the same action.

into

tell

you the philosophic book

have learned these secrets

nothing but a cauldron half

of which

when

the water

of water, in the boiling

full

was urged a

little

the fire at the bottom of the cauldron,

flowed over the said cauldron

been

has

It

?

in

and

:

briskly

by

rose until

it

it

that could only

because there was some wind engendered

'

be

(wind, in

was air stirred by the removal of a compressing force) in the water by virtue of the inasmuch as the cauldron was but half full of fire water when it was cold, and was full when it was the philosophy of Palissy, t

:

hot.

5

Contrast

now

this

remarkable passage, in which the

uneducated Potter almost seizes half a dozen of the mysteries of nature, with the reasonings upon nature prevalent in his

own

We

time.

will pass

the next century, and take for our

who

philosopher than Kepler,

:

faculties.

A

'

The

It

less

a

His opinions are thus globe possesses living

process of assimilation goes on in

well as in animated bodies. alive.

example no

into

published a work in 1619

on the Harmonics of the World. epitomized by Cuvier •

even on

Every

particle of

it it

as is

possesses instinct and volition even to the

most elementary of

its

molecules, which attract and

* Essay on the Theory of the Earth.

THEORIES OF THE SEVENTEENTH CENTURY. repel each other according to sympathies

119

and antipa-

Each kind of mineral substance is capable of converting immense masses of matter into its own peculiar nature, as we convert our aliment into flesh and blood. The mountains are the respiratory organs thies.

of the globe, and the schists

By

the latter

it

its

organs of secretion.

decomposes the waters of the

order to produce volcanic

The

eruptions.

strata are caries or abscesses of the

sea, in

veins

in

mineral kingdom,

and the metals are products of rottenness and disease, to

which

is

it

bad a smell.

'

them have so world had passed into

owing

that almost all of

Even

after the

the eighteenth century, science far behind the point that

In 1708, Scheuchzer

is

was

in

many

respects

had been reached by Palissy.

found maintaining, in the Me-

moires of the Academy, that

God

lifted

up the moun-

tains in order to drain off the waters of the deluge,

that they

were made strong

in

and

order that they might

stand properly upright. Palissy then, having assigned to thermal springs their true position in connection with volcanic action, pro-

ceeds

to discuss their

medicinal use.

He

explains that

the medicinal use of springs will vary according to the

medicinal matters which they have taken up from the earth

;

another

A

that ;

some may be

but he ridicules

practical

useful in one case, all

some

in

extravagant expectation.

physician of the present day could not

speak more soberly or sensibly upon the subject,

al-

though long after the days of Palissy the most ludicrous credulity the

was prevalent, even among

the learned,

upon

subject of the virtue that resides in springs.

A

PALISSY THE POTTER.

120

reference to the early records of our Royal Society,

contained in the

first

numbers of

the

Philosophical

— dating nearly a hundred years — of give us plenty of grave

Transactions the time

after

Palissy

on baths

details

will

that possessed

ring health or beauty. to

One

the virtue of confer-

writer * considers negroes

have been blackened by subterranean steams. Palissy points

and thermal springs which and

safety-valves,

tend

issue

little

'

'

holes,

fire

is

violence

and

no violence,'

can take breath by

though they be, as in some places they are

seen, no bigger than worm-holes. it

the

There

or quaking where the

steams

from the earth, act as

abate

to

frequency of earthquakes.

he says,

subterranean

out that these

In the

same way,

happens with that which heats the water of the baths,

because

The

waters.'

breath by the channel of the

takes

it

best

comment upon

this

said

opinion will be

a passage from the best modern work upon the subject of which Palissy ature,'

says

is

treating. f

Sir Charles

more than twenty

'

Steam of high temper-

Lyell,

'

centuries, to issue

as the Italians call

them

;

has continued, for

from the "sUifas,"

thermal springs abound not

only in regions of earthquakes, but are found in almost

* «

Philosophical Transactions, No. 57, (1669.)

may

Subterranean steames, perhaps,

mixtures as

to

cause

much

minerals, earths, and soyles

wool, and other

sheep)

men



I will

little

be of so

He

says

:

many kinds and

of the great diversities of metals, j

.

.

.

yea, of the furres, hayres,

varietys in animals

(particularly in

not except the Ethiopick hue } and

in distant climates.'

f LyelPs Principles of Geology.

humors of

MODERN countries,

all

however

probably

to

heat that

we owe

this

121

SCIENCE.

from active vents.

distant

It is

unceasing discharge of subterranean the general tranquillity of the globe

and the occasional convulsions

may

that occur

;

arise

from the temporary stoppage of the channels by which heat

transmitted to the surface.'

is

Up

to this point, the

doctrines of Palissy contained

in the present treatise display a philosophy that

our high respect.

titled to

He

is,

upon

all

is

en-

subjects

that are

connected with a study of nature, a century or

two

advance of the

in

men

of his

own

The

time.

opinions narrated in the present chapter have, however, chiefly represented truths almost attained, rather than

regions of knowledge

absolutely conquered.

next and most interesting portion of the essay,

In the

we

shall

find Palissy teaching the true doctrine of springs, pro-

pounding

for the first time to the

world a great cosmical

idea with absolute correctness, and proving his position

by a

train of the best

and purest philosophic reasoning.

The reasoning of the artisan, written in unassuming French, fell among pedants, and produced no fruit. The practical application of his theory to a system of water-supply, by surface-drainage, forms the concluding portion it,

and main object of

his essay.

He

had prefaced

he says, with an exposition of the views of nature

upon which to imitate first

was founded. Because Nature in any point whatever, '

it

it is

if

impossible

we have

not

contemplated the effects she produces, taking her

and exemplar, since there is nothing in the world wherein perfection can be found, excepting in for guide

the works of

its

Creator.

Taking example then by

122

PALISSY THE POTTER.

those beautiful formularies which

come

He

we

has

left to us,

we

shall present-

to the imitation of the same.'

Bernard's doctrine on

this

head, as

ly perceive, does not form one of his least important

claims upon the recollection of posterity.

DOCTRINES OF PALISSY.

123

i

CHAPTER DOCTRINES OF PALISSY

!

VIII.

THE FOUNTAIN AND THE

FLOOD.

Springs were supposed, long after the time of sy, to be supplied

carried

by secret conduits from the

sea-water to

reservoirs

sea,

Palis-

which

The

mountains.

in

water in the reservoirs being then vaporized, ascended

and condensed upon the cavern- walls the crevices of rock, pure

and

distilled, as

has been distilled from an alembic. times called the author

supported

it

;

but that

it

to trickle

was not of

obvious enough from the fact that

water that

Descartes

of this theory

:

through

is

some-

he certainly

his invention will

we

proving the same notion as an opinion

be

find Palissy dis-

common among

the philosophers in 1580, sixteen years before Descartes

was

born.

In

the

'

New

Dictionary

of Natural History,'

an

encyclopaedia of existing knowledge on that subject, published in very

many volumes between the

and 1830, M. Patrin writes the After narrating cartes,

says,

5

'

article

years 1816

on springs.

the most popular theory, that'of Des-

he declares

it

to

be an error.

Springs, he

are caused by condensation of vapor, chiefly in

124

PALISSY THE POTTER.

upon the tops of mountains.

the night,

duced by the

trickling

down

condensed on cold glass

man

notice did the poor

among the

that

of drops

So

little

speaking simple French obtain

was philosophy cherished by springs,

down

bottles.

Latinist philosophers of his

during that age of

are pro-

way

of the water in a

corresponds entirely with the trickling that have

They

;

so

little

French themselves

the

discord,

civil

own day

theory

that the

of

expounded perfectly and very beautifully by

Master Bernard of the Tuileries ished of neglect

;

and

in the

year 1580, per-

a work of great pretension

in

published by French naturalists a quarter of a thousand

years after the demonstrations in the cabinet of Palissy, the true theory of springs

By

his

cepted

;

was

and a few men, who read

countrymen,

his

into

his

books before they

unmerited oblivion,

use of his suggestion.*

practical

body of

unknown.

immediate hearers Bernard's doctrine was ac-

passed from obscure fame

made

still

in his

own

But by the

day, the character

He

of Palissy as a philosopher was not appreciated.

was one ries in

or two

— now

advance of

had not ears

to

his

and then even three

own

time, so that his

hear him with.

— centu-

own time

Moreover, France was

busy upon other matters, and had no leisure to think for half a minute about springs of water, while there prevailed a '

When

more engrossing for

interest in pools of blood.

a long time,'

says Bernard,

'

I

had

closely considered the cause of the sources of natural

fountains and the place

whence they might proceed,

at

* Fontenelle, in his eulogy on Couplet, gives an instance in the case of Coulanges-la-Vineuse.

among

the notes to the Appendix.

Some

details will be

found

THE FOUNTAIN AND THE FLOOD. length

became

I

125

plainly assured that they could proceed

from or be engendered by nothing but the rains.' After having heard your opinion Theory replies '

:

I

am

compelled

say that you are a great

to

Do

fool.

you think me so ignorant that I should put more faith in what you say, than in so large a number of philoso-

who

phers

return thither

who do

if

to

all

waters

come from

There are none even

?

make

It is

it.

and

the sea

men time we

to the old

not hold this language, and from

have believed wish

us that

tell

all

a great presumption in you to

us believe a doctrine altogether new, as

you were the cleverest philosopher. Practice.

'



If

I

were not well assured

you would put

opinion,

me

in

great shame; but

to

not alarmed at your abuse or your fine language

am

certain

quite

against

those

all

that

who

I

I ;

my am

for I

win against you and

shall

are of your opinion, though they

be Aristotle and the best philosophers that ever lived; for

I

am

quite assured that



my

opinion

is

Theory. Let us come then to the me some reasons by which I may know some likelihood in your opinion. '

'

Practice.

— My reason

is

fixed the borders of the sea,

transgress

we

:

as

it is

this

:

it

is

trustworthy.

that there

beyond which

ties

shall not

it

written in the Prophets.

In effect

see this to be true, for inasmuch as the sea

has some height in the middle it

;

it

may

* Palissy refers only

not

come

to

any

is

in

rate,

yet at the extremi-

keeps within measure by the

in order that

is

God has

that

several places higher than the earth, while, at it

Give

proof.

command

submerge

to the height of the

of God, * the earth.

waves.

It

appears

afterwards that he fully understands the principle of water

126

PALISSY THE POTTER.

We

'

among if

have very good witness of these things, and the

works of God

you had taken heed

you would say

that

that

greatly marvellous, for

is

of the sea

to the terrible effects

appears to come from twenty-

it

four hours to twenty-fours twice to assail the earth, desiring that its

coming

it

should be ruined and submerged. like to

is

against the earth to

a great army which might come

combat

it

and

:

front, like the

its

front of battle, breaks impetuously against the

and

of the earth, bringing a noise with

limits

furious that

seems bent upon destroying

it

And

all.

rocks it

so

And

because there are certain channels on the borders of the sea in the surrounding land,

on the said channels,

some have

which there have been made

to

come

several gates for allowing sea-water to

channel

coming it is

rising of the tide

at the

may

it

about

:

into the

in order that whilst

cause the said mills to grind, and when

to enter the channels, finding the gate closed,

and having no servant gate,

built mills

and causes the

And when

it

fitter

than

itself,

mill to grind for

wishes to

retire, like

it

it

opens the

a welcome.

a good servant,

it

shuts for itself the door of the channel, in order to

leave

it

full

to pass out

finding

its

sea level.

of water, which water

by a narrow opening, so

own

level.

The Dead Sea

Mediterranean, and

The

It

all

is is

that at all times

it

true that there is land below the

1300 feet below the level of the

the land about the Caspian

level of the sea, also, in

affected

made afterwards

is

is

depressed.

Mediterranean seas and gulfs,

by local circumstances, and does not

respond with the level of the open water.

is

at all times cor-

The

direction of

the wind, for example, at certain seasons of the year, raises the level of the

Red Sea towards Suez.

SEA-WATER MILLS.

may

127

And

cause the mill to grind.

if

it

were as you

say, according to the opinion of the philosophers, that

the sources of springs

comes from

needs follow that the waters would be of the sea, and, wh&t

is

more,

it

it

must

salt, like

those

the sea,

would follow

that the

sea must be higher than the highest mountains, which is

not the case. 6

As

Item.

that the water

happens

it

tered the channels

and causes the

which conveys the vessels nels to load salt, wood,

borders of the sea,

army

is

into

which has en-

mills to grind,

many and

and

divers chan-

and other things found on the obedient in following the main

of the sea, which has been skirmishing against

the earth

;

in like case, I

the springs, rivers,

say that

it

must needs be

and brooks should return with them

and they must needs

up during the ab-

also be dried

sence of the sea, even as the channels are

coming of

the tide

that

and dry up

in its

filled

by

the

See now

absence.

whether your good philosophers have any argument sufficient for the

tain thing, that

overthrow of mine.

when

It is

the sea has retired,

a very cerit

discloses

many places more than two full leagues of sand, on which we may walk dry-foot and we must believe that when it is retreating, fishes retreat with it. There

in

;

are

some kinds of

shell-fish, as

mussels, cockles, oysters,

and many kinds which are made in the form of a snail, which do not deign to follow the sea, but trusting in their armor, they that

have but one

selves to the rocks,

and the

shell fasten

others,

that

them-

have two,

remain upon the sand. Some kinds of these, which are formed like a knife-blade, being about half a foot long, have taken the precaution to conceal themselves

128

PALISSY THE POTTER.

within the sand, and then the fishermen go out to seek for them.

It

is

a wonderful thing,* that the oysters,

being brought to a distance of ten or twelve leagues

from the tide

sea, perceive the

hour

in

which the returning

approaches the spot on which they had their abode,

and open of themselves sea as though

it

still

to receive

aliment from the

And

were near them.

because

they have this habit, the crab, knowing well that they

themselves with open doors

will present

shall

little

and when the oyster

shells, the said crab, to

which

stone,

order that they to

the tide

return into their neighborhood, lurks near their

habitations,

two

when

make

his

have parted

deceive the oyster, takes a

not close, and this done, he

upon the said oyster.f

repast

its

puts between the two shells, in

it

may

shall

is

able

But the

* If true.

f Mr. Swainson (on the Habits and Instincts of Animals) refuses to believe this of the ourang-outang, to whom the same device has been for centuries attributed. to

be believed of crabs.

From

Of course

it

is

not

very early times there have

been natural history fables current, in which the oyster, or

some bivalve

shell-fish,

plays the part of hero.

What

Palissy

says in the text concerning mice has been said often of foxes

and racoons. In Dr. George Johnstone's Introduction to Conchology, a book in the right naturalist spirit, full of cheerfulness and unaffected learning, there is reprinted an extract from the Berwick Advertiser of Jan. 15, 1848, which shows that the old stories have not yet lost their vitality. Thus runs the narrative The Inverness Courier states that immense mussels, some of which are almost as large as a man's shoe, are found at Ardinisgain, on Loch Carron. A few days since, one :



'

of these mussels was

left

uncovered by a spring ebb-tide, and

was induced by the rays of the sun to open itself. While thus open it was observed by a prowling fox, which thrust its

THE SHORE

— THE

TIDES.

129

mice have not found out the reason why the oyster has two shells; for it has happened in many places distant

from the sea, when the oysters

the tide and opened as

have before

I

them open would come

finding

hour of

felt the

to eat

mice

said, the

them, and the

oyster feeling the pain of the bite would close firmly its

and

shell,

for they

in this

way many mice have been

had not put stones between the two

As

the crab.

for the large

tonge have invented a good

fish,

way

taken

shells, like

the fishers of Xain-

of deceiving them

to

and

in these they

which they attach the cords of

for

many

they have planted upon certain spots in the sea large, thick poles,

:

have fixed pulleys

their nets,

the sea has retired, they let their nets

and when

on the sand,

lie

leaving however the cord to which they are attached,

holding by

its

two ends

to the said pulleys.

the sea returns, the fishes ture

on one side and the

concern

them

:

about

the

nets,

come

with

it,

And when

and seek pas-

other, giving themselves

because

and when the fishermen see

they swim

no

above

that the tide

is

on

the point of turning, they raise their nets to the height of

the water, and they being attached to the said poles, the bottom of said nets

is

held

down by

several stones

and lumps of lead, which keep them firm below.

The

mariners having stretched their nets and raised them in this

way, wait

and as the

until the tide

tide recedes, the

they are accustomed

tongue into the

:

shell in the

shall

fishes

have gone down, seek

to follow as

but they find themselves de-

hope of securing the

fish

j

but the

mussel instantly closed on the tongue of the fox, which was retained a prisoner until drowned by the rising tide.

VOL.

II.

9

,

130

PALISSY THE POTTER.

ceived, inasmuch as the nets stop them, and by this means they are taken by the fishermen after the tide

is

down.

'And

I

order not to wander from our purpose, will give you another illustration. It must be held in

for a certain fact that the sea in winter,

and

were

if I

to

is

as high in

say more

I

summer

as

should not speak

untruly, because the marshes are highest during the full moon of the month of March and that of the

month of July

at

:

which times

covers more lands

it

maritime parts of the Xaintonic islands than at any other season. If then it were true that the sources in the

of springs

up

come from

the sea,

how

could they be dried

summer, since there is not at that time less sea than in the winter ? Take notice of this proposition, and you will perceive that if the sea nourished with in

her

teats the fountains of the universe,*

they never could

be dry in the months of July, August and September, at which times an infinite number of wells become exhausted.

must needs again dispute against you and your Latin philosophers, because you find nothing good if it does not come from the Latins. I tell you for a general and certain rule, that waters never can mount higher than the sources from which they I

pro-

Do you

ceed.

not

know

well

that

there are

fountains on the hills than in the valleys it

were

true

mountain, hills

still

it

the is

sea

and even

if

as high as the highest impossible that fountains on the is

could proceed from the great flood of the sea

*
that

?

more

la

mer

alaictoit

Palissy plays

de ses tetines

les fontaines

upon a word, perhaps.

de l'uni-

SALTNESS OF THE SEA. and the reason a higher place equally high,

is,

because

make

to

it is

it

131

bringing water from

in

mount up

another place

to

channel by which

essential that the

the water passes, should be so well closed that nothing

can escape

;

into the valley

otherwise the water having

never would remount into high places,

but would escape by the

first

hole that

once conclude that

will therefore at

high as the mountains,

its

For the earth

if

it

could find.

the sea

I

were as

waters could not arrive at

the high parts of the mountains,

proceed.

descended

is full

in

whence

the springs

many places

of holes,

cracks and gulfs, by which the water that might flow

from the sea would escape holes, springs or gulfs

it

into the plain,

summit of the mountains all engulfed and covered with water so pierced, the

the

could find, and before

to the

is

by

the plains

and

;

it

first

rose

would be

that the earth

continual fires which proceed from

them sulphurous vapors that bear testimony, and but one hole would suffice, or a the abysses bring with

single crack, for the submersion of all the plains.'

To sea that

it

the statement that if spring- water

would be

it is

Palissy,

salt,

Theory opposes

came from

the

the general belief

purified in passing through the veins of earth.

on the contrary, replies

:



'

It

is

much more

comes from the earth, having been carried thither as well by the current of rivers which empty themselves therein, as by the impetuous waves which violently strike against the rocks and salt-containing earths. For you should note There that in many countries there are rocks of salt. is some author who has written in his works that there to

be believed that the

is

a country in which the houses are

salt

of the sea

built of blocks of

PALISSY THE POTTER.

132 salt

which being considered, you must seek more

;

you would have me believe waters of springs and rivers proceed from the

legitimate arguments if that the sea.

Theory.

'

— And

pray you then

I

make me

to

own opinion, and whence you think can come if they do not come the from sea.

understand your that they

'Practice.

— You

must believe firmly

that all the

waters that are, shall be, and have been, were created

And God, wishing to commands them to go to and

in the beginning of the world

leave nothing in idleness,

and be productive.

fro

as

:

This they do without ceasing,

have told you the sea does not cease

I

to

manner the rain-water that winter remounts in summer to return again in come.

In

like

go and falls

in

winter,

and the waters and the heating of the sun and the dryness of the winds striking against the earth raises a large quantity of water, which being collected in the air

and formed

into clouds are sent out to all corners

of heaven as the heralds of the Lord.

moving

said vapors,

the

the winds

the waters fall again

and when

parts of the earth,

all

And

it

is

upon

God's pleasure

(which are nothing else than stores of

that the clouds

water) shall dissolve, the said vapors are converted into rains '

which

Theory.

great

liar,

raised up earth,

it

upon the

fall

— Verily

and

if it

would be

find out

I

were

into the

air

earth.

now

that

you are a

true that sea-water could be

and

fall

afterwards upon the

salt rain, so there

you are caught by

your own argument. (

Practice.

part

:

— That

do you think

is

very badly theorized on your

to take

me by

surprise

upon

this

THE RISE AND FALL OF RAIN. point

You

?

133

are far out in your reckoning.

had considered the manner

in

common

which

you

If

salt is

made, you would never have put forward such an argument, and

have put the sea-water

the salt-makers

reservoirs, to cause

it

salt

But you must understand that

ever could be made.

when

were as you say, no

the truth

if

into

their

congeal under the influence of

to

were

it

not that heat and wind raise the sweet water which

is

the sun

and wind,

mingled with the

way

never would congeal at

And when

salted.

has exhaled, the In that

it

all

sweet water

the

residue creams and

salt

congeals.

prove that the clouds raised from sea-

I

water do not contain

For

salt.

if

the sun

and wind

exhaled the salt-water from the sea, they could also exhale that which

used for salt-making, and then

is

would become impossible

to

make

it

There you

salt.

have your arguments destroyed. '

Theory.

— And many

opinion of so

are engendered of

what

become then of

shall

the

philosophers, that springs or rivers

a thick

air,

which proceeds from

below the mountains, from certain caverns which are

and they say

in the said mountains,

comes and 1

and some time afterwards dissolves and

thick

changes

?

Practice.

say, that

which causes the source of springs

into water,

rivers

it is

— Do an

air

you understand fully what you which thickens against the vaults

of caverns, rocks, and that

Grant

it

is

of speaking air,

that this air be-

so is

and then

:

at

any

rate

improper. that

it

this dissolves into it

seems

You say

me

to

that

the

it is

I

?

manner

a thickened

resolves itself into water.

then be water similar to that of which

water

It

would

say that

it

is

PALISSY THE POTTER.

134 raised, of

which we speak as clouds.

.

do not deny

I

.

.

and abysses of

that the waters enclosed in the caverns

the mountains can exhale against the rocks and vaults

which overhang the said abysses

:

but

deny

I

the whole cause of the origin of springs

is

that this

it is

:

so far

you consider how since the creation of the world there have continually proceeded from the said mountains springs, rivers and brooks, you will from

it,

that if

understand that

easily

it

impossible that the

is

said

caverns could supply with water for a year, or for a

many

month, as

...

flow daily down.

as

rivers

I

do not deny that the watery vapors from the subterra-

nean caverns it

may contain

a large quantity of water

must necessarily have been placed and carried

by

the posts

and messengers of God,

winds, rains, storms and tempests, as

that it

thither

written that

is

The by

then, in caverns have been placed there

but

say, the

is to

they are the heralds of the justice of God.

:

waters,

the rains

engendered as well of waters that have risen from the sea as of those from the earth and from in the

humid

all

things,

drying of which their aqueous vapors are raised

up on high

And

to fall again.

cease to ascend and descend

;

thus the waters do not

moon manner the

as the sun and the

have in their action no repose,

in

like

waters never cease to labor in engendering and producing,

going and coming as

God gave

to

them

commandment/ Palissy, having in the next place pointed out the hard

texture of rocks

and mountains, by

virtue of

which they

serve as a skeleton under the softer earth, proceeds to the fuller elaboration of his views.

curate and philosophical

;

They

and never did a

are quite acnaturalist



GEOLOGICAL CONDITIONS OF A SPRING.

135

unaffected and clear-sighted as most naturalists are

unfold

of his observation with more ex-

results

the



quisite simplicity.



Having taken this consideration/ Palissy says he has been speaking of the hardness of the rocks 1

*

into



your memory, you can understand the reason

why more tains than

moun-

springs and rivers proceed from the

from the remainder of the earth

which

;

is

no

other thing than that the rocks and mountains retain the

water from the rains, as they might be held by a brazen

And

vessel.

said

the

water falling upon the

mountains over the earths and

and are not stopped

until

clefts,

said

always descend,

they have found some spot

grounded with stone or rock tolerably close-grained or condensed and then they rest on such a bottom, and ;

having found some channel or other opening, they peep out in fountains or in brooks and

rivers according to

the nature of the opening to the receptacles

much

and

:

as such a source cannot run contrary to

on the mountains,

it

inas-

its

nature

descends into the valleys.

And

though the beginnings of the said sources coming from the mountains can scarcely be large, there

comes

to

them aid from all parts, by which they are- aggrandized and augmented and especially from the lands or :

mountains which are sources. 1

.

.

right

and

reason

why

the

left

of said

.

Let us come now

water-sources in

mountains.

to

You

the

to the

there are not

lowlands and plains as in the

should understand that

were sandy, loose or spongy,

if all

the earth

like the cultivable lands,

water-springs would not be found in any place whatever.

For the rain-waters

falling

on the said earths

PALISSY THE POTTER.

136

would descend even lower and lower towards

and could never remain anywhere

centre,

whether

in wells or springs, is

make

to

The reason why water

either wells or springs.

the

found

is

no other than because

they have found a floor of stone or argillaceous earth,

which can hold water as well as stone seeks water in sandy there

;

and

he will not find

soils,

any one

if

it

be under the water some clay, stone,

mineral, by which the rain-water

is

slate

or

stopped upon

its

You may

passage through the earth.

unless

tell

me

have seen several springs proceeding out of sandy »or

even out of sand

that there

is

itself

below some

which

to

:

floor

it

soils,

answer as above,

I

of stone, and that

spring rises higher than the sand,

you

that

comes

if

the

also from a

higher ground.'

having thus

Palissy, springs, his

is

about

cause

demonstrated the

of

pass to the practical application of

to

knowledge, when he remembers one or two more

arguments against the prevailing notion are supplied retires,

theless

by channels from the

When

the sea

he says, the channels emptied of sea are nevernot

empty

:

they contain

channels be perfectly closed, before the sea on

its

tration/ he adds, is,

'

how

air. is

If,

then,

the

the air to escape

return, since the sea cannot pass

in unless air passes out?

which

sea.

that fountains

and

it

'I

have another singular

shall

be the

last

on

this

illus-

head,

and islands of Xaintonge

that in the districts

bordering the sea, there are sundry small towns and villages with both sweet

and

salt wells

;

one

may

clearly thereby that the wells of which the water

see

is salt

are supplied by the sea, and the wells of sweet water

which are near the

salt wells

and

also near the sea, are

SWEET WATER AND BITTER. the runnings of the rain that

by

supplied

And what

inland parts.

there are sundry

little

more, and well

is

islands environed

137

come from to be noted,

and surround-

ed by the water of the sea, even some of them do not contain an acre of dry land, in which there exist wells of sweet water

makes

this

;

on the spot nor from the sea

their course

have not

certain that such wells

it

from the flow of the rains traversing the earth have found a bottom, as

The

have already

I

said.'

until

they

rest of the essay Palissy devotes to practical

The

more philosophical suggestions. The following passage from

(1617), chap.

and

but

*

ideas; there occur, however, in the course of

*

;

after the

xiii. § 3,

*

it

two

difference in the

Purchas his Pilgrimage/

illustrates the opinions held in

further

time of Palissy on

l

the Originall of Fountaines

;

which both scripture and reason, rinding no other store sufficient, deriue from the sea, how they are thence conueyed by secret channels and concauities vnder the earth, and by what worke-

men

New

and fresh waters. Scaliger's experiments to proue the sea-water at the bottome fresh, by bottles filled there by cunning diuers or otherwise, is by Patritius his experience, as he saith, found false. And this of Nature thus wrought

into

freshnesse of the springs, notwithstanding their salt originall

from the sea,

may

rather be ascribed to percolation and strayn-

ing through the narrow spungie passages of the earth, which

makes them leaue behind nesse and saltnesse.

(as an exacted toll) their colour, thick-

Now how

it

should come to passe that

they should spring out of the earth, being higher than the sea, yea, out of the highest mountaines, hath exercised the wits of

some ascribing spungie earth, some

phylosophers thirstie or

j

it

to

to the

a sucking qualitie of the

weight of the earth press-

ing and forcing the waters vpwards, some to the motion of the sea continually (as in a .

.

.

And Mr.

pumpe)

thrusting forwards water.

Lidyate, in a Treatise of the Originall of

Springs, attributeth the

same

to

under-earth

fires.'

PALISSY THE POTTER.

138 size of springs,

he accounts for by the different distance

which the waters they found an

may

have flowed underground before

and by the greater or

outlet,

less extent

of surface from which they have received the drainage.

The continuance

of springs during the dry weather he

explains by pointing out that the process of percolation

through the earth

very gradual, and that the supply

is

of one rainy season can thus set in before the supply left

by the

On

last

season

is

quite exhausted.

the subject of artificial fountains the doctrines of

They

Palissy are in the highest degree ingenious.

founded on a

strict

who

The

landlord

tain,

should regulate

masonry

ways of

imitation of the

are

nature.

has on his estate a rock or mounits

drainage by stopping up with

crannies and wild outlets for the water,

all

aiding here and there with a few

and so managing

that the

artificial

channels,

rain passing through the

surface-soil should all drain

downward

the base of the mountain.

In order that the flow of

may

water

heavy

Bernard suggests that

rain,

stones,

one point

at

not be impetuous or destructive in a time of

channels

larger

all

to

and

should

be

its

course through

obstructed

by great

that, as further barrier, as well as

by way

of profitable investment, trees should be planted over mountain-side, and

the whole

grow under base

of the

their shade. hill

in

The

plants

encouraged

to

water, collected at the

a large reservoir,

is

to

filtrate

through a bed of sand into a second reservoir, and into a third

if

convenient, which will be the fountain, and

which may be decorated at pleasure. The water is to be drawn by a tap, and a second tap over a small receptacle

is

to

supply pure water

when

it

is

needed

for the

ARTIFICIAL FOUNTAINS.

When

use of cattle.

the house

the gathering-ground, the water

is

somewhat to

is

139 far

from

be brought from

the reservoir in pipes.

On

where there

level ground,

land-owner

is

own

for his

how

taught

to

it

no mountain, each

make a

gathering- ground

Selecting a

private use.

give a slope to

is

field,

He

is

to

then to pave

his sloping field with stone, or slate, or clay,

that

is

of about four feet, by carrying the

earth from one end to the other.

make his reservoir. he should make no other

bottom of

he

it

But there

and is

at the

no need

use of his gathering-

Having established the impervious base, planting trees in it, and leaving a little room around their stems, he may cover it with cultivable soil, and plant a field through which the rains will percolate, and under which they may run slowly down into the reserground.

From

voir.

the reservoir, through a sand-filter to the

fountain, the water will pass as in the other case.

In districts where there

may

clined field

no stone, nor clay, the

is

be made of beaten earth turfed over,

and shaded from the sun by surrounding network of grass-roots water will run

in-

will

down such a

form a

floor,

The

trees.

and the

rain-

slope, towards the artificial

fountain.

Theory

Bernard that his reservoirs for

objects to

mere

surface-drainage are that they

have a

cisterns.

fair right to

Palissy replies,

be called natural springs,

because they are formed in the same way. said to

you

that they

points but two; the is

assisted

vines

is

:

just as

'

I

have

resemble natural fountains in first is,

as

I

have

all

said, that nature

sowing corn, training and cutting

aid to nature

:

the second

is

of great weight,

140

PALISSY THE POTTER.

and cannot be understood unless you have former part of that properly,

my

you

in

mind

the

and having understood

discourse,

judge by the proofs

will be able to

I

have alleged that none of the natural fountains can produce water of the good quality of which you can be so assured as of the quality of that which

you how

to

The reason

make.

seen, that the whole earth

have taught

you may have

of different kinds of

is full

earths and minerals, and that

as

is,

I

impossible that water

it is

passing by the conduits of the rocks and veins of the earth should not brina; with

it

some

mineral, which cannot happen with the

which that

it is

best

:

well

a general rule that the lightest waters are the

ask you

I

fountain of

Then you know

have instructed you.

I

or hurtful

salt

there water lighter than that of the

is

you already how they have risen before they descended, and that happened through the power of a warm exhalation now the waters which have risen can contain in themselves but little earthy

rains

?

1

have

told

:

substance and

which has so

still

lightly

less of mineral.

And

this

water

ascended by exhalation, descends

again upon ground which you

know

from mineral or hurtful matter.'

If,

well to be free 'therefore, says

any difference in name is to distinguish his fountains from those which flow without assistance, he Palissy,

would

call

those

Wild

which grow naturally

fountains,

in

the

'just

as fruit-trees

woods are called wild

and being transplanted are softened and improved

And

you would understand better waters are the lightest, and in consequence use.

question a

if

little

the dyers

:

for

that rain-

the best,

and the sugar-refiners, they

GATHERING-GROUNDS. will tell

you

and

many

for

The

141

that the rain-water is best for their business

other things.'

by the shrewd Potter

practical principles taught

in this treatise, are precisely those in

day busily endeavoring

writers are at this the public.

The system of

the last few years, and

The

among

us only during

slowly coming to be regarded

means of providing

large towns.

all

is

to instruct

surface-drainage taught by

Master Bernard has been applied

as the best

which sanitary

for the water-supply of

opinions recorded in 1580 by

Master Bernard of the Tuileries, find a complete echo nearly three hundred years afterwards in the report of the General Board of Health on the supply of water to the metropolis, issued in 1850.

not less decided in

is

Bernard Palissy was pointing

after

its

in

as

Our Board of Health

censure of well-water, than

own

his

The

day.

Palissy had

pointed

board,

out,

the

admixture of foul matter with the wells of towns,

tells

us that

'

out,

deep well-water

free

is

from these surface

animal and vegetable impurities, but

more of mineral impurity,'* is

it

has generally

(so taught Bernard,)

usually unattainable in sufficient quantity at a

'

and

mode-

rate expense.'

In Bernard's time that last objection had

especial force,

and was dwelt upon by the

we have

seen, with

ample emphasis.

copious evidence which 1

l

it

The board

declares to be

Instinct or experience/ says

Potter, as

'

Mr. Youatt,

port of the Board of Health quotes gladly,

'

gives

conclusive in

whom

the re-

has made the

horse himself conscious of this, for he will never drink hard

water

he has access to soft he will leave the most transparent water of the well for a river, although the water may be turbid, and even for the muddiest pool.' if

j

142

PALISSY THE POTTER.

favor of the adoption of the principle of soft water

supply by means of gathering-grounds.' adopts from

The new

idea of

its

gathering-grounds

in

Lancashire/ and the new practive in Lancashire

is,

in effect, that

it

has been,'

the

The new

'

round the

hill,

convenient for

to

sterile

point at which a reservoir

expense of excavation. stored,

take

to

moorland or

midway, or as high up as may be the sake of fall, regard being had to

An embankment

thrown across some natural gorge,

and

'

run a catch-water trench or conduit

the space of the gathering-ground. is

Lan-

practice in

board informs us,

some elevated ground, generally sand heath, and

practice

which Bernard taught two hundred

and seventy years ago. cashire

the

'

having in

may

at the

nearest

be formed without the

Into this the rain-water

many

is

led

instances been previously

filtered.'

The Lancashire men, on

the point of water-supply,

The

are not in advance of the self-educated Potter. secrets he had gathered from devout

nature, Bernard did not hide.

could

he called the learned

;

cabinet,

and placed

before them

;

tongue and printed

He told them men about him

his self-taught

he wrote it,

it

communion with

down

as he in

his

knowledge freely

plainly in his

and scattered

it

mother

in print.

declared himself ready to be visited in his

He

own house

and answer questions, or give more abundant explanations of his doctrines to

desired.

were

To

great,

the

humble

His

efforts

any man by

whom

they were

the utmost limit of his energies, and they

by ordinary and by extraordinary means, artisan

endeavored

were unsuccessful.

to diffuse his

France

knowledge.

in that miserable

BREAD CAST UPON PHE WATERS. age could not attend

to science,

143

and they who praised

the ingenuity of Master Bernard of the Tuileries,

were

wonder that it should be displayed by a man ignorant of Greek and Latin. There would most concerned

to

have been a hearing for the naturalist out of France he could only have spoken

to the

world in what was

then the universal tongue of science

won

also

more respect

Bernard could write only

his

in

in his

;

own

he would have country.

rank as a philosopher.

nested

among

for wanting gravity of aspect,

his

claim

So, were an eagle to be

him as a but they would pity him and censure his perverted

owls, the owls might look upon

clever though eccentric bird

But

mother tongue words

whose extreme simplicity and ease discredited to

if

;

taste for flying out into the daylight.

144

PALISSY THE POTTER.

CHAPTER

IX.

DOCTRINES OF PALISSY: ALCHEMY AND THE ORIGIN OF METALS.

Brouage, a small town, with a harbor,

is

situated

on the coast among the marshes of Saintonge. built

Louis

Pons, under the reigns of Charles VII. and

XL

Jacques,

The town having been fortified by this was named after him Jacqueville or Jacopolis, was a name Brouage

soon afterwards corrupted into Jaques Pauly. prosperous salt-marsh indicates brou,'

not far

district,

and the

meaning marshy soil. from the old home of

the year

1570.

and the whole

The town

district

Palissy, in Saintes, civil

wars

fountains

:

had

the last

of Saintonge was trampled

down

The town of Brouage, much from want of water,

when besieged, had suffered Remembering this fact, and being most the district,

of Brouage,

Saintes also had been besieged,

by combatants.

repeatedly

It

nature, being taken from a Celtic word,

its

undergone two sieges during the in

was

upon ground rescued from the sea by Jacques, a

Sire de

'

It

familiar with

upon waters and the Governor and

Palissy adds to his essay

an

'

Advertisement

to

Inhabitants of Jaques Pauly, otherwise

named

Brouage,'

THE BEC D'AMBEZ.

BR0UAGE

them

to

explain to

is

suitable for the

that the

145

of their town

situation

supply of their want by surface-

drainage, at a very small expense.

Having completed the statement of the Theory of Springs, and the application of his theory to practice, Palissy devotes

— upon

always, of course, using the form of dialogue

Dordogne.

the bore in the



a page or two to a short essay

If

it

were caused by the

opposition of the tide, he does not see

why

it

take place only at one time in the year, and

should

why

it

should not take place in the Garonne also, since both

same estuary. These questions he had pondered on the Bee d'Ambez, the narrow point of land between the confluence of the two rivers and he endeavors to explain a difficulty that was in his day perfectly inexplicable, by the suggestion of an rivers flow into the

;

ingenious

idea.

This

little

also,

named by Rabelais among

the islands of Saintonge,

most dangerous spots on the French coast.

also,

Here,

had looked on thoughtfully, and taught

Palissy

himself

a

stormy passage of Maumusson among

notice of the

the

essay contains,

how waves

are lifted by the friction of the

wind. After briefly noticing these matters, the venerable Potter bends his white hairs over the paper,

pares his pen for a more delicate bold attack on

alchemy

century, could not since

investigation.

A

France, during the sixteenth

in

fail to

and pre-

give a great deal of offence,

alchemy was practised by physicians, nobles,

even kings.

Bernard was not likely

to

speak other-

wise than boldly, but he was not willing to offend an entire

class

vol. n.

of men, which 10

included

many

of

his

PALISSY THE POTTER.

146

and familiar

patrons

chemy and notice To '

metals the

The

friends.

preceded,

is

Reader/ which

is

treatise

upon

al-

by

this

therefore, set

up by way of

lightning-conductor, to divert whatever flashes of wrath

work might otherwise bring down upon his head. Friend reader, the great number of my days and the diversity of men has made me acquainted with the divers affections and opinions more than can be named his

'

existing in the universe

among which

:

have found

I

the opinion of the multiplication, generation

and aug-

mentation of metals, more inveterate in the brains of

many men than any of the because I know that many seek

And

other opinions. for the said

knowledge

without a thought of fraud or malice, but because of an

assurance they have that the thing

possible

:

that

this writing that I

do not

at all

propose to blame three kinds of persons.

That

causes

me

to protest

recreation,

The second

are

who have

the

all

kinds of physicians,

ways of

nature.

evil use of

it.

And

The

means, and who believe

the thing to be possible, and would not on

to

to

by way of

their minds,

desire to understand the

third are they

make

is

and without being incited by a desire of

unlawful gain.

who

who occupy

nobles

say, the

by

is

because

I

any account

have undertaken

speak against thousands of others who are unworthy

of such knowledge, and totally incapable, on account of their ignorance and slight experience.

they have

not

the

Also because

means of supporting

the

losses

which ensue, they are constrained to cheat with exterFor these nal dyes and sophistications of the metals. reasons

I

have undertaken

to

speak boldly, with invin-

cible proofs, I say invincible to those of

whom

I

speak,

ALCHEMY. and

if

to

any one who may have effected so

there be

much by of God to

his labor

reveal to

him such a :

secret,

I

such a thing

mind cannot possible,

is

more

confess that there are no people

ashamed

to place

among whom

myself

I

itself

fit

when

I

see the contrary, and truth shall vanquish me,

than the ignorant,

mean

do not

But on the contrary, inas-

my own

as the capacity of

to the belief that

he has moved the charity

that

speak of such persons

much

147

shall I will

hostile to science

shall not

be

at all

in the first rank, in as far as

And

concerns the generation of metals.

if

there be

any one to whom God may have distributed this gift, for according to that let him excuse my ignorance which I believe I am about to put my hand to my pen, to pursue that which I think, or to express it better, ;

that

which

I

fr&ve learned with

very great labor, and

not in a few days, nor in reading of a set of books but in anatomizing the

womb

of the earth, as

may

;

be

seen by the discourse which follows.' It

will

be seen that Bernard took

much

pains in

writing this apologetic note, and that his remodelled

sentences are here and there Potter,

left

The

incomplete.

though his genius spreads a great charm over

was probably not ready with his pen he says of himself, in this treatise on Alchemy, that he

his writing,

1

;

could write neither Latin nor Greek, and

French.'

The

scarcely

consciousness of technical defects, and

the necessity of laboring for

that

union of extreme

clearness and brevity essential to the tion of his philosophic views in

vention of book-making

print

fit

— before

— caused Palissy

pains over his composition.

We

communica-

know

the in-

to take great

that

he

did

PALISSY THE POTTER.

148

because by some accident the

this

printer received

duplicate sheets of manuscript belonging to one portion

Of

of the treatise upon Alchemy.

was a corrected version of

the

these sheets one

other

and Palissy

;

appears not to have detected in good time that the printer

had used them both, one

in

its

proper place,

the other tacked to the conclusion of the treatise.

A

comparison of these two p ieces shows how carefully the Potter labored to overcome what he regarded as the

drawback of

his

t

rustic style.'

Once engaged upon proceeds care

is

to

speak his mind without reserve

speak clearly.

to

He

and Alchemy. of the

his subject, Palissy, of course,

formation

His

treatise is

suggests modestly his

of metals

for of the

;

augmentation, and congelation of alchemists pretend, he says,

command

'

it is

;

his only

upon Metals

own

theory

generation,

metals,

to

which

a work done by the

of God, invisibly and of a nature so very

was never given to a man to know Against alchemy the Potter uses all the power of occult that

it

it.'

his

reason. In regarding Bernard as a chemist,

remember

that the

bud

own

in our

the seed from

main

we must of course

truths of chemistry

began

to

century, and that in the time of Palissy

which they were

to

come was

planted in the minds of the philosophers. not decry alchemy in

its

decline.

scarcely

Palissy did

In 1681, exactly a

century after the publication of Palissy's discourses,

Beccher* wrote of chemists as a strange class of mortals, impelled by an almost insane impulse to seek *

In the Physica Subterranea.

Preface to the Reader.

CHEMISTRY.

149

among smoke and vapor, soot and flame, Yet among these evils,' he and poverty.

their pleasure

poisons says, I

'

'

die if

My

seem

I

myself

to

may

so sweetly, that

would change places with the Persian king.

I

kingdom

got hold of

not of this world.

is

my

pitcher

method of treating seek gold

which

to live

;

but

I

by the

I trust

right handle

For

this study.



have

I

the true

the psuedo-chemists

have the true philosophy, science,

more precious than any

is

that

gold.'

So Beccher

was proud to write a hundred years after the time of and when we remember that the Phlogistic Palissy :

Theory

—a

propounded

and Stahl

false but until

for

its

serviceable

notion

— was

Beccher

that time, having, indeed,

establishers,

we must

not

not expect

more

than shrewd perceptions in the best chemical theory that could

the year 1580.

between It

was

man

have been propounded by the wit of

alkali

first

The

simple doctrine of the opposition

and acid was not thirty-four years

known.

at that time

taught by Francis de la Boe

who was born

in

afterwards

(Sylvius), in

Am-

sterdam.

Chemists, in the time of Palissy, supposed that there

were four elements, and three principles, salt, sulphur, and mercury. Of sulphur and mercury were made the metals.

disproved.

This theory of the origin of metals Palissy

remembered that the origin of metals is at this day unknown to chemists they have not yet been decomposed and we escape It

should be well

;

from our

ment

in itself,

by saying

an

ele-

though we more than suspect that

this

difficulty

that

each metal

is

a theory that better knowledge will explode. Until our own great chemist, Faraday, in very recent

also

is

PALISSY THE POTTER.

150

years, gave definite direction to our thoughts by point-

ing out the relation that subsists between ore-producing veins and the magnetic currents in the earth,

no

light to aid us in discovering the origin of metals.

We

made

say that they were

in

the beginning,

accordingly will be found in the end

;

of nothing.

never

idle

said Palissy

scheme of philosophy the universe animal, plant, and mineral, alike are

In his ;

working always God.

and

so said the phi-

So

losophers in Bernard's time of rocks.

is

we had

He knows

to

fulfil

no

idle

the

benevolent designs of

substance in creation.

In endeavoring to account for the formation of metals,

he observes,

in the

first

when

place, that

are found deposited in a crystalline form.

pure, they

After

many

years' reflection on the origin of crystals, Bernard tells

us how,

'

one day somebody showed

me some

tin

ore

was thus formed in points, another time there was shown to me silver ore still cleaving to the rock, in which the substance of the said silver had been congealed, which ore was also formed in diamond points.

that

When

had considered

I

that all stones

minerals,

and kinds of

of which

the

such things

all

salt,

in the earth

form but

and against

that of the surface

takes

place

some form whether

gular, quadrangular, or pentagon, is

understood

marcassites and other

congelation

water, contain in themselves

I

in

trian-

and the side which

the rock cannot

on which

it

have any

reposes at the

time of congelation.'

was acquainted, from observation, w ith the which substances were slowly deposited from

Palissy

mode

in

water in the crystalline form.

r

He was aware

contained water of crystallization,

'

of the

the crystalline water

CRYSTALLOGRAPHY.

151

which has some affinity with the generative water presPalissy shows, throughout, a ently to be spoken of.'

knowledge of the

fact, that crystals

of the same sub-

stance are constant in their form, although this fact

was not recognised in science before the year 1669, and crystallography was unknown as a science upon which reasoning was to be founded until the time of Haiiy, in 1780, two centuries after the publishing of

Bernard's book.

Palissy ascribes, in

several places,

the formation of crystal to the tendency existing

homogeneous

particles to

come

among

together and cohere.

know well/ he says, with a glance forward into unknown regions of chemistry, that these things have some power of attracting one another, as the loadstone Also I know well that sometimes I have attracts iron. 1

1

'

taken a stone of fusible matter, that after

and ground ized

when

it

I

I

it

mingled

it

that the said stone

no

man

it

had pounded

as fine as smoke, and having thus pulver-

was about

although

I

was

with clay,

to

some days afterwards

labor on the said clay,

had begun

I

found

to collect itself again,

so subtly mingled with the clay, that

could have found a stone so big as the

little

atoms that we see upon the sunbeams entering a chamber, a thing at which I marvellously admired. That will induce

you

to believe that the

matter of the metals

and congeals wonderfully, according to the order and the wondrous power which God has or-

collect

dained.' Crystals, then, being deposited in water,

taining water, native metals being at the

and con-

same time

deposited in a crystalline form, Palissy considered that

he could not

err, in

considering

all

metals

to

have been

PALISSY THE POTTEH.

152

He

deposited from water.

the hearers in his cabinet,

confirmed his opinion

to

by producing wood impreg-

nated with metal, and shells that likewise have assumed metallic form,

of which shells

'

he says,

'

'

have seen

I

some quantity in the cabinet of Monsieur de Roisi.* For my part I have one which I showed to the mastermason of the fortifications of Brest, in Lower Brittany,

who

attested to

me

that there

were many

like

found in that country.

In the cabinet of

a famous surgeon of

town of

this

it

to

be

M. Race,f

Paris, there is a stone

of metallic ore, in which there was a fish of the same substance. great

In the

number of

region of Mansfield are

reduced into metal.'

fishes

found a

Another

piece of tangible evidence produced by Bernard at his lectures,

was a lump of

slate in

which there was con-

tained a metallic crystal, slate itself being evidently a

subaqueous deposit.

He

cites also, in support of his

opinion, the fact of water being found abundantly in

One day Antony, King of Navarre, commanded to pursue the vein of some silver mines that had been found in the Pyrenees. But when a small mines.

'

quantity of ore had been extracted, the waters that

Henry of Mesmes (Diocese Bazas), Chevalier Seigneur de Roissy, was Councillor of Slate, Chancellor to the King of Navarre in 1572, and superintendent of the house of the Queen *

of France in 1580. f

Monsieur Race was Nicolas Rasse des Nceux, surgeon

the king,

who

died in Paris, 1581.

He

left

a

MS.

to

collection

of pieces in verse and prose, relating to the political events of his time,

and an extensive

Gothic romances.

Some

library, chiefly consisting of old

curious old books, with his

upon them, are dispersed among

name

the chief libraries of Europe,

153

palissy's fifth element.

were found compelled the overseers of the mines

abandon

And you know

all.

well that

to

many mines

have been abandoned for that reason.'

Having determined, then, that metals were deposited from water, in which no man ever saw them in nature

how

visibly suspended, Palissy labored to discover

He

deposit could take place.

solved his difficulty by

the suggestion of another element.

he says,

tals,'

'

form

this

'

in the midst of

Since the crys-

common

waters,

them in their congelation, any more than fat, oils, and other matters that will separate themselves from the common water we must refusing to have affinity with

:

conclude, then, that the water of which the crystal

formed, if

it

is

of a kind different to

be of a different kind,

that there are

common

we must

water

;

is

and

assure ourselves

two waters, the one exhalative, the other

essensive, congelative, and generative, which two waters

manner

are intermingled one with another in such a that

it is

impossible to distinguish them, until one of the

two has been congealed.'

Having defined the affinity which unites bodies different in kind, and the attraction which is a supreme power that draws together things of the same nature '

'

having pointed out some of the tallography, Palissy

posed

to

the

principles of crys-

proceeds to account for various

phenomena by means of crystallization, the

first

his fifth element, the

water of

germinative or congelative as op-

exhalative

or

common

water.

This

matter, flowing occult with every stream, contains the

germs of

scents, flavors,

and divers properties of things

afterwards to be developed. are the

germ of

In the seed, says Palissy,

future leaves

and branches,

colors,

PALISSY THE POTTER.

154

odors, and fixed shapes of leaf and flower,

things

it

draws out of the earth

says Bernard,

his

is

;

not

element

fifth

and

salts.

This water, that

crystals, is obtained this

it is

congelative

germ of minerals

be obtained also from

from straw and vegetative matter

which enters

which are

bodies,

is to

more wonderful,

— the

water, which he supposes to be the

which

all

full

into

of

the composition of animal

and were born

fluid,

in fluid,

to increase their substance.

Against the objection that the manner of incomprehensible,

is

example, he says, painters

were

figures in the

adduces other wonders

Palissy

comprehension, and yet

equally beyond

'

I

have seen

at the time

in great request,

windows of

this action

true.

For

when

glass-

because they painted

the temples, that they

who

painted the said figures did not venture to eat garlic or

onions

;

for if they

had eaten any, the painting would

not hold upon the glass.

I

knew one

of them,

named

Jean de Connet, because he had an offensive breath, all

the painting that he

way

be

made

to

plished in his

made upon

glass

would

in

no

hold firm, although he was accom-

Again,

art.'

'

I

have seen a

woman

who when her husband by some secret movement the

modest, wise and honorable,

was

in the

country

felt

day on which her husband would *

Germain des Prez there are some MS. works of Palissy, by a contemporary stu-

In the library of

extracts from the

return.' #

St.

who adds to this passage the following statement from The wife of Master Jean de la Molhis own experience trete, named Master Jean de Rochnions, living at the said dent,

:

place in Carry, assured

'

all

the people of her house one morn-

ing at the end of May, 1582, that

I

should arrive that evening,

FRAUDS OF ALCHEMISTS.

155

Against the alchemists Palissy objects that error to attempt the formation of that

He

by

is

it

an

which

fire

them pound an acorn and by art attempt to rebuild it, or pound radiant shells and mould them again into a glorious cup of the like nature forms by water.

Such things are

lustre.

bids

less

difficult

than

create

to

gold.

speaking of shells rainbow-hued, Palissy shows

In that

he did not, like his contemporaries, look upon the

rainbow as a simple wonder ered,'

he says,

'

the

in

sky.

that the cause of the

'

I

consid-

rainbow could

only be that the sun-light passed directly across the rains that are opposite the sun

rainbow

to

:

for

one never saw a

which the sun was not opposite

;

also

one

never saw a rainbow through which the rain was not falling.'

The arguments is

of Palissy against the alchemists

Of

not necessary in the present day to reproduce.

the absurdity of the

by

belief that

it

the philosopher's

stone gold could be multiplied a hundred-fold, Bernard

To the assertion his own hand, under

had an extremely keen perception. of his antagonist, that he had with the direction of

an alchemist, doubled a piece of

money, Palissy answers with

mon

A second

fraud.

by wax

the

to

had been

com-

piece of metal had been fastened

end of the rod with which the cauldron

stirred,

silver at the

the exposition of a

silver

and the wax melting, had

bottom of the

pot.

left

the

Other frauds Bernard

which proved to be true, I returning from Lyons, on which journey I had been away nearly two months. Such movements, I say, belong not only to human and brute creatures, but also to the vegetative and metallic'

PALISSY THE P0TTEE.

156

exposes, and especially dwells upon the large quantity

money that had been put into circulation by men who carried on the business of coiners under the

of bad

cloak of alchemy.

Beam)

There was a

'

man would have

no jeweller or other to

be marked,

to

supposed their

For they answered

be bad.

(of

whom

taken in the diocese of Xaintonge, on

were found four hundred counters ready metal

coiner

false

good coin

like

hammer and the flame, were right in touch and But when they were tested the fraud was dis-

to the

tone.

At

covered.

that time there

named Grimaut, who

was a provost

me

assured

at Xaintes,

that in proceeding

same gave him the names and surnames of a hundred and sixty men, who were his against a coiner the

fellow-tradesmen, together with

ages,

their

qualities

and abodes, and other certain marks of recognition.

And when

I

why he did coiners named

inquired of the said provost

not cause the apprehension of the said

me

upon

his

list,

take

it

because there were in their number

:

he replied

to

that

he dared not under-

many

judges and magistrates, as well of the Bordelois and Perigord as of Limousin

:

and

that if

he had ventured

annoy them, they would have found means him to death. to

to put

5

Of

the facility

and

skill

be practised, Palissy gives

de

Courlange,

many

such

this illustration

valet-de-chambre

artifices, if

one day happening Charles IX.,

with which delusions might

he

would teach him

he had cared

ment upon which

to

'

The

king,

make

Sieur

knew For

use them.

to discuss these things before

boasted, to

the

to

:

by way of

jest,

King

that

he

gold and silver, to experi-

matter he

commanded

the

said

HATCHING GOLD. Courlange

to

157

prepare for the work promptly

done, and on the day of

brought two phials

trial

the said

:

this

was

De Courlange

of water, clear as spring-water,

full

which was so we'l prepared,

that

on putting a needle

or other piece of iron to steep in one of the said phials, it

became suddenly of

the color of gold,

and the iron

being steeped in the other phial became of the color of silver

then quicksilver was put into the said phials,

:

which suddenly congealed

:

that of one of the phials

taking a golden color, that of the other being like to silver

of which the king took the

:

went boasting to

make

to his

his

own

And

all

the while this

De Courlange has

told

was a

me

with

mouth.'

Palissy

tells also

endeavored to

mother that he had learned how

gold and silver.

deception, as the said

two lumps and

of the devices by which alchemists

hatch gold, by exposing their materials

to

a slow, continued heat, resembling that of incuba-

Some

tion.

placed the

fire at

a distance from their

would-be golden eggs, and conducted the heat through

a

flue

many

with

doors,

by which

to regulate the

Others used the heat of a lamp, with a

perature.

wick perpetually equal, and hoped would produce the attainment of say,'

Bernard

years,

*

tem-

tells

— witness

us,

the

'

that

that in the their

end

object.

this '

I

some have waited many

magnificent Maigret,* a learned

Louis Maigret had translated Greek and Latin authors, and

composed systematic works upon French grammar.

He had

also edited a series of engravings from Albert Durer.

Palissy

may

perhaps

personage.

same

him magnificent because he was a pompous He speaks of him in another treatise with the

epithet.

call

158

PALISSY THE POTTER.

man

who

of great experience in these matters,

come by

theless being unable to if the

wars had not put out

he should have found the

As a

his desire, boasted that

lamp before

of the views of Palissy upon

we may

the subject of alchemy,

on the subject of the advantage five or six

Frenchmen

pher's stone.

'

several alchemists,

refer to his opinion

be derived even

to

that

urges Theory,

told,'

'

for

'

—a

good sixteenth-

century ideal of the use of a great deal of gold for carrying

by

they could succeed they

if

would make gold enough 1

if

really did discover the philoso-

have been

I

the time,

alcahest.'

illustration

last

his

never-

on the war against

adversaries,

all



and

even against the Turks.' Palissy replies to this, that

we had

better have in

a famine, than six

was

it

spise

the

to find

I tell

men who

abundance as you say. that

you on the contrary France a plague, a war and

'

possible to

For

make

could

make

everybody would de-

cultivation of the earth,

out

how

to

make

whole land would be

had been assured

after all it,

gold,

left fallow,

gold in such

and would study

and

and

in this all the

way

the

forests of

France would not supply the alchemists with charcoal for six years.

They who have

studied histories say

that a king having found

some gold mines

dom, employed the chief

part of his subjects in extract-

in his king-

ing and refining the said metal, which caused the lands to

remain fallow, and famine

to arise in his

dominions.

But the queen (as being prudent and moved with charity towards her subjects) caused to be made secretly capons, pullets,

the

pigeons and other viands of pure gold, and

king would dine, she caused these viands

when to

be

HATCHING GOLD. served, whereat

159

he was glad, not understanding the

was aiming but seeing that no other food was brought to him he began to lose his temper, seeing which the queen supplicated him to consider that gold was not meat, and that he would do better to employ his subjects in the cultivation of If you are not the ground than in the search for gold. convinced by so good an example, consider within yourself and be assured that if there were, as you say, point at which the queen

six

men

France who knew how

in

:

to

make

would make so large a quantity thereof

gold, they

that the least of

them would wish to establish himself as a monarch, and they would wage war with each other, and after the

be

had been divulged, so much gold would

secret

made

change

that

for

it

none would be willing

bread or wine.'

to give in ex-

160

PALISSY THE POTTER.

CHAPTER DOCTRINES OF PALISSY

I

X.

THE ROCKS AND FIELDS.

Potable gold has already been referred pages

;

ter as

medicine follows the

a small treatise pointing out

The

metals. in the

The

treatise

its

to in these

useless charac-

upon alchemy and

belief in this preparation, almost universal

time of Palissy, did not die out very rapidly.

potable

gold of Mademoiselle

Grimaldi has not

long been out of use in Paris, and a receipt for making potable gold

was

still

contained in the dispensatory of

the Paris Faculty of Medicine

two centuries after the

delivery of Bernard's lectures.

From

potable gold Bernard passes on to mithridate,

the enlarged version of a receipt supposed to have been

found by

Pompey

in the tent

of Mithridates.

There

was a supposed antidote to poison (perhaps used really as an antidote against malaria), composed of salt, figs, almonds, nuts, and rue-leaves; and there was also a formidable prescription, including fifty-four items.

This prescription w as enlarged afterwards, on the occaT

sion of a plague, to a conspiracy against the stomach

of some three hundred drugs, invented by a council of

GEOLOGY. Against

physicians. tice

161

this absurdity,

and the whole prac-

of making long prescriptions, buttressed as

was

it

by the confidence of the profession, Palissy battered arguments, and with the arguments he brought as usual the field a light troop

into

of apt illustrations, well

equipped and furnished by his ready

The

wit.

scent of

a bouquet containing

many

fragrant flowers

he says, in delicacy

to the

fragrance of a single blos-

som

is

inferior,

the

meat of capons, pigeons, partridges, pounded

together,

would not have so good a flavor as the meat

;

of one of them alone

;

an unsightly

other colors, rubbed into a mass, yield

compound bined

into

so also

;

many

properties of medicine

a lump yield a result which

and

foretold,

green and

azure, vermilion,

be of less value

will

com-

cannot be

to the

physician

than a medicine containing only one or two ingredients judiciously selected.

A

dispute which Palissy had maintained with

learned

friends,

one winter's day, while standing by

the Seine, opposite his workshop,

next occurs to his

mind, and suggests a brief essay.

it

it is

Its

subject

is

the

and Palissy maintains by argument formed on the surface of the water, and that

formation of that

some

ice,

does not, according to a

The

water and ascend.

common

belief,

form under

question remained subject to

debate even in the beginning of the nineteenth century.

The

essays on salts and on

common

salt,

which follow

next, have been sufficiently referred to in a former part

The

of this biography.

next dialogue, one of the most

Between this and the elaborate treatise upon marl, with which the book concludes, are an essay upon clays, and the

important of the whole,

VOL.

II.

11

is

that

upon

stones.

PALISSY THE POTTER.

162

which use has

account of his struggles as a

potter, of

been made

and which

in the biography,

will be

found

complete at the conclusion of these volumes.

The

dialogues upon

stones and marl, detailing

views of Palissy on

many

the

latest

points connected with geol-



the best expression ogy and vegetable physiology of his knowledge gained among the rocks and fields

— are

all,

therefore, that

before

we

close our survey of his doctrines.

Let us

first

now remain

understand the

science in the time of Palissy.

be found laid

down

to

of

position Its first

in his treatise

where, they appear scarcely

be considered

to

geologic

principles will

upon stones

else-

;

have been suspected.

was supposed, had been made in the beginning, and there was little to learn by studying its Fossil marine shells, on mountains and structure. formed, elsewhere, were certainly extremely curious

The

earth,

it



probably, by a sportive plastic influence descending

from the

stars, or

the earth tions of

the

;

by a formative power

in the

body of

certainly not relics of animals, but imita-

The

them, sports of nature.

Church held back

all

strong

arm

of

bold suggestion, that might be

supposed by short-sighted ecclesiastics

on the authority of Moses.

The

hills

range of the Apennines are very

full

to

throw doubt

which of

skirt the

fossils,

and

protested strongly against the old plastic doctrine to the eyes of sensible observers.

The

authority of this

was therefore openly questioned by individuals in Italy from time to time, before a doubt had suggested itself to naturalists in any other country. The painter Leonardo da Vinci, who died in 1519, was

doctrine

the

first

who

is

known

to

have asserted that the

petri-

JEROME CARDAN. had contained living animals.*

fied shells us,'

he writes

formed

163



are the stars

hills

of distinct ages and species

They

the stars

force, to

;

now forming

that the

I

shells

Verona

exposed the absurdity of the theory of

and said

but

?

Fracastoro, on the occasion of excavations at in 1517,

tell

us that these shells were

tell

by the influence of

in the hills

ask where in the

they

'

'

plastic

Mosaic deluge was too transient

be the cause of so peculiar a dispersion of the shells.

on the other hand, was

Andrea

Mattioli,

sighted,

and called the

mented by

petrifactions,

less

clear-

matter fer-

fatty

heat.

Failoppio, of Padua, considered

them

to

be generated

by fermentation, or a tumultuous movement of terresHe was a professor of anatomy, trial exhalations. but he believed the tusks of elephants found in the soil

be mere earthy concretions,

to

and even regarded

buried vases as fortuitous impressions in the Mercati,

who

soil.

a few years before

described,

the

publication of Bernard's book, fossils preserved in the

Vatican by Sixtus V., called them stones shaped by the influence of heavenly bodies.

makes a catalogue

for a pope,

opinions

scientific

He, however, who

must needs abide by the

Many men

Church.

of the

of

science had at that time adopted the opinion of Cardan,

and these

opinions

had

spread

even

into

France.

Cardan, however, was behind Fracastoro in his views, for while

*

he considered

fossil shells to

This interesting fact was,

I

believe,

be the remains

first

Sir Charles Lyell, in his Principles of Geology, ters of the painter.

made

public by

from MS.

let-

PALISSY THE POTTER.

164

of living animals, he ascribed their dispersion to the

Mosaic deluge. In France, during the latter days of Palissy,

the

Church, the ignorant mass, and the bigoted in science, looked upon

fossils in the old

way, as sports of nature

more enlightened followed

the

;

Cardan

the opinion of

But the opinions even

against both Palissy contested.

of Cardan were suspected by the orthodox

and

;

Palissy,

passing beyond them to more enlarged views, was the first

mam. as Fontenelle declared, a century and a half

after his death,

in the

who dared openly and

of testacea

French Academy

assert in

fish



'

the

first

Paris that fossil remains

had once belonged

to

marine

animals.'

Hieronimo Cardan, whose opinion of

fossils

is

due

to the

that the position

Mosaic deluge Palissy justly

was a very able Milanese philosopher, who wrote upon judicial astrology, physics, and morals. He is said to have starved himself, in the same year in which Bernard's book was published, in order to fulfil controverts,

a prediction that he should die five.

He

at the

age of seventy-

did die at that age, in the year 1580, but

the legend of his

suicide

probably an error.

is

He

was a man of quick wit and warm blood, as he notifies to the world by publishing among his works, instead of whispering

to the

Church,

his confession.*

*

Cardan must have published the worst of himself in this account of his life, for he had reason to take pleasure in alarming the respectabilities of his respectability.

An

servant to a father

"When

his genius

own

illegitimate

who was

little

had forced him

He owed

day.

son, he spent else to

his youth

him but a

at last

up

nothing to as

cold master.

to the

means of

165

PETRIFACTION.

Palissy then stood equally opposed to the geology of the

Church and

the geology of

gratifying his desire for study, he

upon

tor's degree,

the

was

his degree

hood, like the

by

the

so

much

Through

at last obtained first

was twice refused

ground of bastardy

he was not respectable.

;

To

Jerome Cardan.

:

— though

his doc-

learned,

the pleading of good friends,

but his

first

years of

man-

eight years of his childhood, were darkened

shadow of impending death. After being homeless and friendless, while he was at the same time desperately sick, Cardan at last settled in Milan (often, however, unsettling himself), and made his way as a physician. He owed nothing to the world, and conscious of his intellectual rank, he scorned the cant which would have excluded him, for his birth's sake, from the profession he had chosen. He knew the private characters of nearly all the men who dressed so carefully, and had pleased this,

so I

him

and

am

of their

own goodness

;

I

solemn hypocrites,

'

1

have done

this, ;

not one of you,

him

It

and have gambled and done many a wild thing and

to tell the

this

to display before the world.

who

are all honorable men.'

In society,

up what were accounted the perversest arguments. He was careless about dress, and bold enough to walk about, varying his pace according to his humor, forgetting entirely all that measured steadiness of gait in which respectability delights. The result was a general opinion that he was partly mad in some respects too clever for a man, in some too it

pleased

to take

;

silly for

a child.

A second sketch of his own

life is

given briefly

by Cardan, in the course of his three books on Consolation, whereby he shows that he himself had need to be consoled. His pithy style and aptitude in illustration may be displa}^ed, together with the cast of his philosophy, in a few lines from this

work

of order,

l :

A man

all's

amiss

is j

nothing but his mind

and

if that

be well,

all

;

if that

be out

the rest is at ease.

remember a certain rich man, falling mad, snatch'd up a straw, and complain'd he should die for hunger, because there was no corn within the empty ears.' (I quote from an old I

English translation English- d



Of great

Cardan, his three books of Consolation use in these times.

London, 1683.)

PALISSY THE POTTER.

166

understand the position of the Potter's doctrines in the history of science,

the state of

we must remind

knowledge long

ourselves again of

When

after his death.

Steno the Dane wrote, in 1669, on solids within the

belief

continued to be prevalent that

still

A

were not animal or vegetable remains.

solids, fossils

hundred

years after the time of Palissy, the most extravagant notions on the subject of petrifactions are broached in

our

own

There

philosophical transactions.

no want

is

of faith here in their animal origin, but the faith wants

Reference

measure.

de Lithiasi, where, the

other

made to Helmont Re marques, is recited '

Petrified Child seen at

by the Owner used *

gravely

among

Testimony of a

things

is

for a

and

Paris,

Whetstone/ and

to other

perhaps not well enough attested by Authors,

of the stupendous Petrifactions of whole Companies of

Men and Troops in his

of Cattle, by Aventinus, by Purchas

Pilgrimage, and (of a troop of Spanish Horse-

men) by Palissy

Jos. Acosta.'*

was

too

shrewd a philosopher

In speaking of the cause of petrifaction, he

credulity.

says guardedly, as for the petrifaction

never seen

it

but

;

I

respectable physician, in a

'

There

Abdomine

is

of man,

I

have

have the good testimony of a

who

tells

me

that he has seen,

gentleman's cabinet, the foot of a

One Monsieur *

manifest

to

man

petrified.

Salles, living in Paris, has assured

also

cited

l

Deusingius's Historia Infantis in

inventi et in duritiem lapideam conversi.'

and Kirker talked of a town in Africa inhabitants, and Vanhelmont went so petrifaction of a troop of Tartars, cattle

of a certain wind.

me

petrified with

Heppel all its

far as to record the

and

all,

by the blowing

AFFINITY AND ATTRACTION. that there

is

body of

the

German prince who has in a man in great part petrified.'

it is

his cabinet

a

quite possible that if a

He

and goes on

these facts as he has heard them, that

167

man were

leaves to

say

buried where

body could become impregnated with stony matter,

his

proper way, such petrifaction would take place.

in the

The way

in

which

described by Bernard,

of the process in in

but

little

in

petrifaction

correct enough;

is

'the

takes

place,

explanations

language of our own day

The

element,

fifth

congelative water, or, as Bernard often calls

of course a prime agent in the process.

salt,

it,

Let us

understand what Bernard means by his

element.

many

differ

and scarcely show more

language,

knowledge than Palissy possessed.

tinctly

When common

salt,

sugar,

saltpetre,

other substances, are mixed with a

They

of water, they dissolve.

as

is

disfifth

and

quantity

fit

disappear entirely.

If

they were merely held in suspension, they would be visible in little

dissolving, they

water, the

A

particles throughout the fluid

have entered

much more wonderful

phenomenon would

glass of water thus

eye water

in

lime

is

us

to

color or fluidity,

its

water

think

it.

solution, is

to

the

Well-water, which contains

every drop.

in the

than our familiarity with

often suffer

a large quantity of lime,

The

into a relation with the

containing matter in

which has not affected

but by

;

is

clear, fluid,

in

a

fluid

and sparkling.

form, and not

dis-

tinguishable from water.

This mystery Palissy expressed

to his

understanding

by saying

that solid matter, flowing as water in water,

existed in

the

whose purpose

distinct state

in the

of a congelative water,

economy of nature was of

vast

PALISSY THE POTTER.

168

and which he called therefore a

importance,

Every substance

element.

that

fifth

can be deposited from

solution in water was, in the eyes of Palissy, a salt.

The duty of this mand of God, to

congelative water was, at the compenetrate by virtue of

its

form

fluid

along the roots into the stems of plants, and there congeal into a solid matter for their increase the

of

strata

the

;

to penetrate

and deposit matter which

earth,

should cause the growth of stones and so forth. Palissy uses as terms often convertible the phrases, salt and congelative water.

From

of salts are deposited.

congelative water '

Salts/ Bernard says,

The

affinity

being

in the earth exercises attraction

which

of another kind,

be

will

salt

kinds

have

'

of the dead body

some

together.

many

on another

and the two

salt,

salts

together might harden and transform the body of a

Again,

man.'

man were

'

I

am

quite sure that if the

body of a

interred in a place wherein there

some

is

dormant water, among which there is congelative water, which forms crystal and other metallic and stony matters, that the said body would petrify: be-

cause

congelative

the

and the

salt

cause of the to

is

of the body of the

of a salsitive nature,

man would

congelative matter, which

itself the

come

germ

affinity that is

is

also salsitive, be-

between the kinds, they

congeal, harden and petrify the

Palissy

is

attract to

human

will

body.'

speaking, in these passages, of the possible

petrifaction of a

human body by

the

same process

which he describes as causing the conversion into stone or metal of wood, shells, and other organized productions.

and

It will

that his fifth

be seen that his theory

is

good,

element or congelative water

is

a

STUDY OF FOSSIL FORMS. which might have been adopted

theoretical formula

a time with very great advantage philosophy. Palissy

It

saw

169

name

the

is

for

to the progress of

a true thing, which

for

economy of

in its true place in the

nature.

The preceding extracts will also sufficiently illustrate the way in which Palissy makes the term salt a convertible

term with

happen

to

Palissy

used

his

examples of the way

contain the

words

and

affinity

We

brought such powers into play. of Palissy the

they also

congelative water;

in

which

attraction,

find in the

and

works

example of the employment of

first

these words in so philosophical a sense.

Enough has been

way

said to indicate the

in

which

Palissy accounted for the existence of fossilized matter.

Against the idea that

shells

fossil

had been scattered

abroad by the deluge, Palissy produces sive

all

those deci-

arguments which would of course not escape

For example,

his

show you presently the picture of a rock in the Ardennes near the village of Sedan, in which rock and in many others are to penetration.

be found shells of of paper

:

all

'

I will

the kinds depicted on this piece

from the summit

although the said mountain

to the foot of the

same,

higher than any of the

is

houses or even the bell-tower of the said Sedan, and the inhabitants of the said place daily

from

the said mountain, to build,

and

hew

in

the stone

doing so the

said shells are found as well at the lowest as at the

highest part, that stones;

I

am

is

to

say enclosed in the densest

certain that

sixteen inches in diameter.

I

that

was

of him

who

saw one kind I

ask

now

holds the opinion of Cardanus, by what door did the

sea enter to place the said shells in the middle of the

170

PALISSY THE POTTER.

densest rock

I

?

have already given you

under-

to

stand that the said fishes were engendered on the very

where they have changed their nature, keeping the same form that they had while living.' This spot

opinion of Bernard's was a bold leap out of darkness into light,

from

ill-regulated guesses into rational ge-

ology. It

have been observed, that

will

extract Bernard

illustration,

the species of shell that

it

and paintings of

contained.

enthusiastic in his study of geology,

the great truths of nature, towards

— no

man

Bernard was

and while the bent

of his genius was towards generalization

must tend

the preceding

found producing a picture of the

is

rock which he takes as an all

in

—a

which

thirst for

all

science

ever saw more clearly the im-

portance of observing accurately the minute facts out of which alone great principles can be extracted.

With

marvellous acuteness Palissy saw the importance of a detailed study of fossils to the discovery of geologic

Modern geology and

truths.

are,

in fact,

The

forms.

all

its

grandest results

founded upon a minute study of first

who pursued

fossil

study with

this

dis-

criminating zeal was Palissy, the self-educated potter,

who had

put himself to school with Nature.

signed to himself the task of taking copies of fossil

forms he saw,

them.

His studies

in

in

He

as-

all

the

order to compare and study

this

soon

direction

made him

aware of the large number of extinct forms of included in the

he says, shells

'

and

list

fish

was desirous,' representing by picture the

of petrifactions.

of reducing or

which

I

life

had found

'

I

lapified, to distinguish

between them and the customary

sorts,

of which the

STUDY OF FOSSIL FORMS.

common

use

is

mit

me

the

my

to put

deliberation

upon

my

time would not per-

design in execution while

I

was

in

having deferred for some years

this,

above-named design, and having always sought

according

to

my

tions, I at length

fishes, '

but because

:

171

and

power more and more

for petrifac-

found more fishes' (using the word

modern scientific sense), form, petrified upon the earth, than

of course, not in the

shells in that

there are

modern kinds

...

inhabiting the ocean

have been bold enough

say

for

my

which reason

I

disciples that

Monsieur Belon and Rondelet* had taken

to

to

pains to describe and figure the fishes found by

during a voyage to Venice, and that

I

them

considered

it

strange that they never troubled themselves to understand the

formerly dwelt and multiplied

that

fishes

abundantly in regions of which the stones, that have

congealed

* Pierre

petrified,

Belon, born in 1518, studied natural history and

the healing art. at the

same time when they were

at the

He was

sent to Judaea, Greece,

He

expense of the Cardinal de Tournon.

and Arabia, died, assas-

He

wrote of coniferous trees, of birds,

fishes, of observations in

Greece, Asia, Judaea, Arabia, Egypt,

sinated, near Paris.

and other works. Guillaume Rondelet, born in 1507, went

to Italy as travel-

ling physician with the before-mentioned Cardinal de Tour-

non,

from

whom

which he married,

upon Montpellier, and

he afterwards received a pension, settled in his native place,

practised medicine.

He

died in 1566.

He

wrote a History of

Fishes, labored with great care from personal observation and

which obtained considerable note in his own day. His garden was stocked with fish-ponds, and some of his friends have recorded with wonder the zeal which urged him dissections,

to

continue his dissections while he ate his dinner.

172

PALISSY THE POTTER.

now

serve

asregister or original of the forms of the

said fishes.'

How well he was

Palissy consulted this register,

may

recognise,

first to

the conclusions

drawn from

shells of Paris,

he declared

that he

was

first to

declare

be best understood by

From a

it.

— and



whose value

study of the

needless to say

it is

the former existence in

At

that region of a great lake or basin of water.

present day

we

ascribe this origin to the tertiary de-

and speak geologically of the Paris basin.

posits,

succeeding passage Palissy

the

is

speaking

the shell deposits about Paris formed

manner



that

to say, there

is

'

at first

of

in the following

infinite

And

of fishes armed with pyramidal shells.

have been engendered

In

has been some great

was an

receptacle of water in which

fishes

the

number the

said

in the waters of the said

receptacle by a gentle heat, whether proceeding from

open

the

which

when

is

air

and sun, or perhaps by a gentle heat

found under the earth as

entering the said quarries.

the said lake

was

full

of

some

.

I .

salsitive

matter, that afterwards congealed,

have perceived .

And

because

and generative

namely

the water,

You will understand me when I come to speak of the stones the Ardennes. And that is why one

the earth and the fishes. better afterwards in the deserts of

commonly fish

finds in the rocks near the sea all kinds of

bearing shells.

has failed

to the

It

said

follows then that after the water

fishes,

and

after the

earth and

water-bed in which they dwelt has been petrified by the

as

same generative

many

virtue as the fish, there are found

shells petrified in the

stone which has con-

gealed from the said water-beds as there were fishes

SEA BECOME LAND. same, and the

in the

mud and

by the same

their nature

efficient cause.

I

proved

by causing a great stone

173

the shells have

and by the same

virtue, this point

my

before

be shown

to

changed

to

auditors

them which

I

had got hewn from a rock near Soubize, a town bordering the sea

which rock had formerly been covered

:

with sea-water, and before

it

was reduced

into stone,

number of many kinds of armed which being dead in the mud, after the sea had

there were a great fish,

retired

The

from that

fact

spot, the

mud and

certain that the sea has retired from that

is

when Xaintonge, when

spot, as I verified, at the time in the

districts

of

establish the

gabelle.

missioned to

make a

marshes

makes a

and being

;

the fish petrified.

point

For

was

sedition

was intended to those days I was com-

in

plan of the in the

there it

region of the

island

of Broue,

salt-

which

on the sea-coast, where there remains

a ruined tower, the inhabitants of the neighborhood

me

attested to

that the channel of the harbor of

Brouage

was formerly seen to come up to the foot of the said tower, and that the said tower was built to keep out the pirates and sea-brigands, who in time of war came often to water their vessels at a fountain near to the

and the said tower

said tower,

is

called the tower of

Broue because of the island on which

which

it

is

placed,

whence the harbor of Brouage received its name. And inasmuch as it is at this day impossible to approach the said tower by way of the channel, one may know by this that the sea has retired, and

is

that

place

:

called Brou,

it

as

may have

gained as

much ground

happens

also, that

near the coast of Alle-

it

vert, not far

in another

from the passage of Maumusson, which

is

174

PALISSY THE POTTER.

so very dangerous, the inhabitants of the district say that they passed formerly with ease

on horseback from

Allevert to the Isle of Olleron over a

arm of

little

And now

two ends.

by

the sea which joined the

that passage as

ships,

the shortest

of the

Isle

Whence

I

at

its

size,

go

way from Bourdeaux

Flanders and

Eng-

to

it

decreasing in one place,

sea,

open sea

was necessary to make a circuit of Olleron. That is a testimony how the

and formerly

:

ditch, or

whatever be their

to Rochelle, or to Brittany, to

land

little

rock,

infer that the

increases

which

is

in full

another.

of

many

kinds of shells, has formerly been a marine bed, pro-

ducing

fishes.'

like this in the

The man who year 1580,

taught publicly geology

illustrating his lectures with

a museum, with diagrams, aud with experiments, de-

remembered in the history of science. The complete scheme of modern geology derived from a study of fossils was of course beyond human

serves to be

grasp in the sixteenth century; but in every direction the

keen

sight of Palissy

had indicated

to

Where even

paths to better knowledge.

him

the true

the bold spirit

of Palissy did not venture to assert that open sea had been, in the depths of the mountains, he accounted for the fossils

by the theory

of water, filtering the

rocks,

that there

among

from which

had been receptacles

the

chinks and caverns of

salts

were deposited, which

away and left rock in their became fossil where it had

That every

passed

place.

fossil

originally lived

stirred

:

that

every water-animal had been deposited

from water, and was included

mud and

the

and

congelative

in the petrifaction of

part

Bernard taught emphatically.

of the

At

the

water

its

itself,

same time he

175

ORIGIN OF FOSSILS.

number of land and fresh-water

pointed out that the shells

is

very great, and that

were by no means

fore

to

shell-deposits there-

all

be ascribed to either

water or fresh water in every case.

marine

salt

In speaking of

great

shells, Palissy calls attention to the

mass

of shells formed in the sea, and formed out of seawater, which must therefore have contained in solution the material of which they are formed, that in a state state

not distinguishable from water

of congelative water, his

fifth

In defining the growth of stones

substance,

Palissy takes

to say,

itself, in

by addition

to their

me-

care to distinguish the

vegetative soul, but insensible action,

the

element.

chanical increase from vital action.

grow by vegetative

is

'

Stones have no

wherefore they cannot

;

but by a congelative aug-

mentation.' In the treatise upon marl,

promise

his

to

we

find Palissy fulfilling

inquire into that useful

many

enunciating again

truths

manure, and

which he had learned

on the subjects of agricultural chemistry and vegetable physiology.

These

the time of Palissy,

subjects

had not been studied

in

although other departments of

botany had made some progress.

Botany grew

faster

in her childhood than the sister sciences.

Though to

Pliny,

who was no

many

be botanist in ordinary to the world,

advances were made the

observer, continued long

acquisition

in the sixteenth

real

century towards

of independent, valuable

knowledge.

Pliny was popular because he treated of the properties

of plants, and that suited the feeling of the learned in

an age of

herbals.

for the cures they

Plants were at

might be able

to

first

studied only

perform.

Antonius

176

PALISSY THE POTTER.

who wrote a book on Simples,* in the year 1536, was the first who established a botanical garden

Brasavola,

;

was

At nearly the same time Otho Brunfels, of Mentz, was the first modern who published figures of plants drawn from nature, f but not arranged according to any systematic

it

situated

on the banks of the river Po.

plan.

Jerome Bock, a German, who translated into Hieronymus Tragus, published a herbal which contains the

first

his

name

in

1551,

indications of an attempt at t

natural arrangement, and succeeds so far as to bring

respectable groups the

into

labiate, cruciferous,

and

composite plants. In the year 1565, Conrad Gessnef, of Zurich, in a letter to

Zuinger, writes in terms that entitle him to

the distinction of being the

by

first

to distinguish

the character of the fructification.

says,

'

whether your plants have

'

these marks, flower,

Gessner,

to Aconite.'

establisher of a

lections

arisen

is,

we

museum.

however, a natural

simultaneously

and nobles

usual things. collection

fruit,

greater

and seed,

are told by Haller,

in his

Palissy

formation of col-

taste

which must have

was

was thrown open

people.

to the cabinets

own the

We

of phy-

time, familiarly and as first

by

to the public,

whom

such a

and employed

*

Examen Omnium Simplicium Medicamentorum.

f

Herbarum Vivse

Icones.

was the

The

among educated

have found Palissy referring sicians

much

Saxifrage and Consolida Regalis are related

I find that

first

By

Tell me,' he

and flower as

fruit

well as stalk and leaves, for these are of

consequence.

genera

BOTANY

CONRAD GESSNER.

as part of the machinery of teaching. lived

177 Gessner,

who

between the years 1516 and 1565, has been

called (in compliment as well as disrespect the world likes to

names)

call

who

naturalist

curiously

the Pliny of

contrasted with Palissy,

as Palissy

full

Germany, was a

was empty of

by being as

the learning of

his time.

By

his hours,

Gessner acquired a marvellous amount of

erudition.

He

spare diet and rigorous employment of

understood Greek, Latin, and

Hebrew

;

he had a smattering of Arabic, and was familiar with French, German,

Italian,

and Flemish.

He

compiled

a voluminous history of animals, and a bibliographical

work called the Universal Library/ containing the names and particulars of all scientific works published by the moderns in his time. He was a pious, modest, '

and pure-hearted scholar, who, when the plague extended

to

Zurich, and laid a finger on his shoulder,

leaving there a monitory spot of purple, took the hint quietly,

and

retiring to his study, occupied himself in

the final arrangement of his writings.

found by death, a

man

verging on

fifty,

Thus he was who had lost

few minutes since he ran alone upon the world.

Gess-

ner, however, studied in printed books, while Palissy

spent equal labor and a longer

of nature.

The

life

over the handwriting

Potter also had a genius equal to his

industry.

Three years

after the publication of Bernard's last

book, Andreas Csesalpinus, of Arezzo, a learned

man

whose profound knowledge of Aristotle did not impede his power of original research, published at Florence sixteen books VOL.

II.

'

De 12

Plantis.'

In his book plants were

178

PALISSY THE POTTER.

arranged according

much

skill

to

an arbitrary system, but with so practically very often

that they fall

into

natural arrangement.

These

facts indicate that in the science of

more progress had been made than ments of natural

history

other depart-

in

Bernard's

in

botany

The

time.

Potter himself did nothing towards systematic botany.

He was

a minute observer, as the devices upon which

he labored curiosity

in the pottery

was directed

bear witness, but his great

knowledge he obtained

the application of whatever

He was

useful ends.

the results exhibited

make

I

Why

perpetually asking

?

to

over

And when he had further, What good use

by nature.

found out why, he inquired

can

of things, and to

to the reasons

of this knowledge

?

In the dialogue on Marl, Palissy again treats of the nutrition

of

manures, and

decay of to earth,

teriously

plants

by

contained

salts

He

in the soil.

points out

foliage, the salts taken

become again

earth,

water,

in

how,

in

in the

from the earth return

and

will hereafter,

mys-

combined with water, be drawn up through

the roots, and enter into foliage again. i

If

why that

you would contemplate/ he says,

is

only because, as

men

the reason

you

the roots of trees are so crooked, it

*

will find

look for the mountains,

roads and by-paths that are easiest of passage, so roots in

their

growing seek the

easiest,

softest

and

least

any stone before a root it will leave the stone upon its way, and turn to the right hand or to the left inasmuch as

stony passage through the earth

;

and

there be

if

;

it

could not pierce the stones that

lie

upon

its

way,

ARTESIAN WELLS.

As

for the forking

that springs

and the crookedness of the branches,

from another cause, which

the branches are pushing out their

seeks the

179

freedom of the

when

young

shoots,

each

and they

air,

separate from one another as

that

is

much

and

dilate

as they can, in

order to have air at command.'

we

In another passage

of the

exploration

soil,

find Palissy

recommending

discussing stratification, and

revealing the principle and practice of boring Artesian wells.

It

said that these wells

is

were

first

Artois long before the time of Palissy. the antiquity of the

practice.

The

bored in

Some

principle

doubt con-

is

tained in the following passage from the Treatise upon

Marl.

Palissy

speaks of

the

search for marl.

think the soil might be pierced easily

by

rods,

*

I

and by

such means one might easily discover marl, and even well-waters which might often rise above the spot at

which the point of the auger found them

and

;

that

came from a place hole that you had made/

could take place, provided they higher than the bottom of the

This

is

certainly the

of Artesian wells.

first It

statement of the true theory

is

a corollary from Bernard's

theory of springs.

Theory might well ask, looking back upon the whole body of doctrine taught by the old Potter in the last years of his '

in

life,

Where have you found

all this

written

?

or

tell

me

what school you have been, from which you might

have learned what you are 1

Practice.



I

telling

me.

have had no other book than the

heavens and the earth, which are known of

all

men,

PALISSY THE POTTER.

180 and given

to all

read in the same

because

I

the stars.'

men I

to

be

known and

have reflected on

had not studied

read.

Having

terrestrial matters,

in astrology to

contemplate

FRANCE UNDER HENRY

181

III.

CHAPTER XL THE REWARD OF THE PHILOSOPHER.

The

which Bernard Palissy explained the

lectures in

doctrines of which a brief outline has

now been

given,

were commenced, as we have already seen, early

when

the year 1575,

They were

still

Palissy

lectures, Charles IX.

who

cis,

The life

III.,

sixty-six years old.

being delivered in the year 1584.

Very few months before

Henry

was

in

the

commencement

had been succeeded by

of these

his brother,

the third of the sons of Catherine of Medi-

in succession

occupied the throne of France.

reign of this king covered the last years of the

of Palissy, and in this reign the troubles of France

again created trouble for the Potter. It

old

might, indeed, have been trouble enough for the

man,

if

there

had been no

the state with his career

enough

to live

;

it

direct interference of

might have been trouble

in Paris in those days,

and teach what

he had learnt from solemn communing with nature in the midst of vice, frivolity,

of Francis

I.,

the

and

riot.

Since the time

court of France had been like a

neglected ulcer, growing daily a more loathsome object

PALISSY THE POTTER.

182 of regard.

If

Henry, when,

age of twenty-three,

at the

he came from the throne of Poland

to the throne

of

France, brought any cleanness with him, he brought

among

it

and was rapidly polluted by

There was reason

contact.

Duke

lepers,

to

age of

and won two

fifteen,

Montcontour

battles

— before the coming of

he was King of Poland, and three he

hope well of him.

made a general

of Anjou, he had been

their



at

As

at the

Jarnac and

Then

his beard.

age of about twenty-

at the

became King of France.

At

the beginning

of his reign, the neutral Catholics joining the Huguenots

made one

many

over

side of a civil war.

years of

Bernard Palissy val

may

began

France during the

be inferred from the fact that

in the

reign of



a languid war was exhausted.

have passed

which did not concern

politics

the state of

;

We

Henry

III.,

was

this,

inter-

which

the fifth civil

struggle, for the vigor of the country

Since the Massacre of

St.

Bartholomew, the mobs

of Paris had become familiar with blood, and the whole

temper of society had taken an aspect of increased Assassination was

ferocity.

Cosmo

dispute.

Ruggieri,

the

a

common end

Florentine

ministered largely to the superstition of

and was regarded as a professor of the ing.

of a

astrologer, all

classes,

art of poison-

Tortures and executions were frequent, at which

Charles IX. had been in the habit of assisting with his

presence

;

and Henry

predecessor.

From such

were not averted.

;

and

followed the example of his

scenes the eyes of

Women

mockeries of passion writer's blood

III.

;

in

were courted with

love-letters

the

women

were

fierce

indited in the

intense corruption of the

A FOUL COURT. his court,

women

complaisance, created

wore feminine

and

the king

public morals,

by some chosen presently the name of mignons by

wearied with

out of men.

had ear-rings

attire,

183

the king, or

Courtiers

fitted into their ears

friend or lover, took

— minions — and

voted themselves to the utmost wickedness and

Confusion reign of

filled

the

Henry

III.

;

de-

folly.

kingdom throughout the entire hand after hand threatened to

drag him from the throne into a coffin or a monastery.

Now

and then the king appeared

to

be aroused, and

with a skilful stroke he at one time turned the tables

on

his adversaries

;

but then he sank again into the

filth

of his court, and yielded up his manhood.

fire

was dead on

fiercest

gale,'

the

says

'

The

hearth of his heart, and the

D'Aubigne, 'could only

set the

ashes flying.'

The king and

the

young

nobles, in the grounds

and

lower chambers of the Louvre, ran races, leapt ditches,

He was

tried pistol-shots

and poniard-points.

who could

most loudly, whether with or without

truth,

talk

of his feats as a seducer or assassin.

curled,

and tricked out with

king and his friends were ing

through the

insulting traders,

young men

streets

stiff,

to

proudest

Ridiculously

affected garments, the

be seen frequently shout-

of Paris,

capering at

always with a poniard ready.

fairs,

The

affected wild attachments to each other,

called each other

by affected names

;

and when a Py-

was absent on a trivial journey, his Damon would wear mourning and refuse meat. Or they would quarrel.

thias

The Seigneur

St.

upon a garment

;

Phal pointed out an embroidered the Seigneur Bussi,

ing up a quarrel and enhancing his

by way of

own

Z

pick-

credit as a

184

PALISSY THE POTTER.

bully, affirmed that

it

was no Z, but a Y.

They

lenged each other, and kept up for years on a remorseless feud. favor,

Another noble, high

this point

in the king's

under some provocation pierced the body of his

The Duke of

wife, destroying her with unborn twins.

Guise,

chal-

Le

Balafre, the

murderer of Coligny on

St.

Bartholomew's-day, and a degenerate son of the duke

who

died before Orleans, pursued a victim, poniard in

hand, into the presence of the king.

The duke

of Guise was the unworthy idol of the

extreme Catholic party, St.

which, since the

to

Day

of

Bartholomew, the town of Paris had most heartily

belonged.

It

was desired

king, at the expense of

duke

to create this

Henry

into

a

and had not the duke

;

wanted steadiness of purpose, the desire would proba-

The

bly have been accomplished. party pressed the

Duke

of Guise sometimes to the very

steps of the throne, while

character

is

in his journal,

Henry



spite of all the affairs of the

war and

went also through

environs of Paris, to

record of his

make

all

'

In

the rebellion that

commonly went

his wife, through the streets

houses of Paris to take the

them;

— the

there one reads that,

the king had on his hands, he

coach with the queen,

tumult of a violent

in

a

and

little

dogs that pleased

the

nunneries in the

the like search for

dogs, to the great regret of those

who had

little

them.'

In the year 1585, this king, finding no other

way

of saving himself from the imminent danger in which

he was placed by the

extreme Catholic party, put

himself at the head of their league,

and issued a

decree prohibiting the future exercise of the Reformed

BERNARD IN THE BASTILLE. those

who

of seventy-six,

still

worship on pain of death, and banishing

had previously adhered Palissy

to

was then an

shop

man

superintending his work-

still

abandoned palace of the Tuileries.

in the

lectures

all

it.

old

teaching philosophy, and

185

and

in his book,

In his

Bernard abstained from

He

allusion to the struggles of the time.

all

preserved

from the horrors of the

his religion pure, but turning

texts

were written upon

to the roll of

drum, he abstained

wholly from religious controversy.

He was known,

civil strife, in

flags,

which Scripture

and psalms sung

however, as a Huguenot, and no royal ordinance could alter

his

alarm, out of the of truth.

or

convictions,

was

It

way

;

that he

O

was delayed,

'

He

to the Bastille.

many who

re-

by the king's decree,

in their worship

case of Master Bernard, only by

in the

the artifice of friends in power,

of

man,

king, nor the decree that thou

Sentence of death, executed upon

mained unmoved

in

had chosen as the way

and Palissy was sent

'

sturdy Potter,

said, therefore, of the old

regardeth not thee, hast signed

drive the

Mayenne, who caused

all

and chiefly the Duke

possible delays to interrupt

the suit against him.

Four more years of

life

remained

spent within the four walls of his time,

two

fair

to

Palissy, all

After a

prison.

daughters of Jacques Foucaud,

girls,

attorney to the parliament,

condemned

like

Bernard

for their firm religious faith, shared with the Potter his captivity.

other,

The

old

man and

the girls sustained each

and awaited death together.

Outside

News came

the

prison

to Paris

doors,

France was

in

tumult.

of the gallant exploits of the

little

PALISSY THE POTTER.

186

by Henry, King of Navarre, and his friend Sully. Poor enough in purse, and with a little army, the King of Navarre was dashband of knights and

soldiers led

ing with an unexpected strength into the tide of war,

a hero

to the

mained the hero of the

He

The Duke violent among

Protestants.

A

scarcely dared be king.

of Guise rethe orthodox.

conclave, called the

Sixteen, formed itself on his behalf into a wild species

He was

of election committee, but he dared not act. invited

by

the Sixteen to Paris,

bidden entrance received

with

hesitating

to

the

;

applause,

frantic

mood

capital

and by the king

for-

he came, he was yet ventured

in

a

where the

into the king's presence,

question of his assassination had been the last topic of discussion.

In the king's presence, he

saw

that the

whispered argument was whether he should be suffered to

go out alive

palace gates.

;

but the king feared the people at the

Guise hastily

the disposal of the Sixteen.

retiring,

placed himself at

The king

sent troops into

There was

the town, the people threw up barricades.

open insurrection.

Guise had

all

qualities except the

boldness needed for a perfect act of usurpation. revolt, therefore,

was

stilled

The

ducing revolution.

The

for a time without pro-

king's unpopularity

among

the

extreme party of the orthodox which governed Paris

was displayed stition

in

a

way

suited to the times.

Super-

introduced into the temple something worse than

money-changers.

There was placed

in

one of the

churches of Paris a waxen image of the king, executed in

accordance with the

all

good Christians were invited

rites

of witchcraft, into which to stick pins.

For the death of unsentenced Reformers the Sixteen

TWO

ROYALTIES.

187

were clamorous; one of them, Mathieu de Launay,

who had

at

Church,

solicited

one time been a minister in the Reformed especially the public execution, al-

ready too long deferred,

happened

in the

of the

old

year 1588, when Palissy was seventy-

Henry

nine years old, and the age of King

The king his own

thirty-seven.

according to



and

visited the prisons,

whom

This

Potter.

was

III.

starched, frilled, and curled,

fantastic

custom

— frequently

interest in the old

felt

man,

he regarded as an ancient servant of his mother.

Finding that

his

age would not protect him from the

stake, the king one

day held with the Potter

this dis-

course, which has been preserved for us in a contem-

porary record.*

My

1

good man,' said the king,

forty-five

years in the

mother, or in mine, and

your own

in

the

suffered

my

Guise party and

I

am

you

so pressed

people, that

I

my

queen,

religion, amidst all the executions

Now, however,

massacres.

of

service

we have

you have been

'

to live

and the

by

the

have been com-

pelled in spite of myself to imprison these two poor

women and you you '

;

they are

be burnt to-morrow, and

you will not be converted. Sire/ answered the old man, the Count de Maualso, if

'

levrier

came yesterday, on your

these two sisters,

to

to

if

part,

promising

life

they would each give you a

They replied that they would now be martyrs their own honor, as well as for the honor of God.

night. for

# Confession de Sancy, chap. Univ., part briefly.

iii.,

book

iii. ;

chap.

i.

vii. ;

the

In D'Aubigne's Hist.

same

story is told

more

188

PALISSY THE POTTER.

You have

said several times that

but

who

it is I

That

pelled." girls

we

pity you,

and

is

who have

feel pity for

said "

not speaking like

who have

I,

you

part in the

I

me

;

am com-

a king.

These

kingdom of heaven,

you to talk royally. The Guisarts, your people, and yourself, cannot compel a Potter will teach

all

to

bow down to images of clay.' The girls were burnt a few months afterwards, in June, 1588. The news of their death reaching the Huguenot camp, Monsieur du Plessis said to the King of Navarre, shortly to be King Henry IV. of France, *

Courage,

since even our girls can face death for

sire,

the Gospel.'

King Henry

III.,

having relieved himself, by assas-

Duke

sination, of the

of Guise and his brother, their

surviving sister took secure revenge.

monk named Clement,

a

her,

Instructed

kneeling before

by the

throne in supplicating attitude, stabbed the king in the belly.

by

the

The monk was of course promptly guards. The king was stabbed to

slaughtered death, and

perished thus in the year 1589.

The murder by the

of the king was counted as a holy deed

fierce Guisarts,

who

set

up a statue of the mur-

derer for public adoration, having this inscription on the

pedestal

ners.' Bastille.

:

In the

'

St.

Jaques Clement, pray for us

same year

sin-

Palissy the Potter died in the

APPENDIX.

APPENDIX. NOTE

A.

DATE OF THE BIRTH OF FALISSY. have assumed the year 1509 as the date of the birth of Palissy ; no grounds exist for adhering D'Aubigne says in his positively to that or any other year. In the preceding narrative

History,

first

published in the years 1616-19,

of the year 1589, which death,

'

I

is

when speaking

unquestionably the date of Bernard's

Mathieu de Launay

solicited that the

aged Bernard,

inventor of excellent pottery, should be brought to execution

but the his

Duke

de

Mayenne caused

his suit to be prolonged,

age of ninety years performed for

him

the

;

and

work of death in

the Bastille.' If Palissy died at the

of his

life

narrative.

age of ninety, he was in every stage

ten years older than he has been represented in the

The

date of his exploration of the salt-marsh is

ascertainable by reference to edicts, and 1543.

When Henry

year 1588,

tells

him

III.,

is

certainly the year

speaking of Palissy in prison in the

that he has been forty-five years in the

same year 1543 in which received a commission to perform work for the

royal service, he refers back to that

Palissy

first

That survey of the marshes took place early in the history of Bernard's struggles as a potter, and it is not easy to suppose that he was then already forty-five years old, and crown.

eighty-five in the year 1584,

when

the Sieur de la Croix

du

Maine wrote concerning him from personal observation that he was then lecturing at Paris, aged sixty years and upwards.

DATE OF THE BIRTH OF PALISSY.

192

Our judgment between these discrepancies is much assisted by the fact that D'Aubigne could not have taken much pains to find out the exact ages of the persons about

whom

he wrote

;

where we are not in uncertainty, a reference to his History shows that we should now and then, if we followed him in such matters, be grievously misled. To the old age of the Cardinal de Bourbon, for example, D'Aubigne adds no less

We

than fourteen years.

D'Aubigne has said

it,

are not bound, therefore, because

to believe that Palissy died at the

age

of ninety. Referring, then, to the year 1584,

when La Croix du Maine

speaks of Bernard Palissy as being a lively man, sixty years

and upwards, we have to consider how much upwards.' Sixty years old would not do, for if he were sixty in 1584, he would have been only twenty-one when he surveyed the saltmarshes and he was then married and settled, after having spent not a few years in travel as a glass-painter, residing several years and following his business in a single town. According to the birth-date assumed in the narrative, Palissy old

'

j

was

fifteen

years older than sixty in the year 1584

when we

less,

call to

mind

the vigor both of

;

neverthe-

mind and body

by which Palissy had always been distinguished, we

find

nothing surprising in the fact that at the age of seventy-five

he should have been described from personal opinion as a

man

of

ment of

'

sixty years

and upwards.'

After four years' confine-

and after he had breathed for four years the unwholesome atmosphere of a prison, as prisons were three hundred years ago, there might seem to be added fourteen instead of four years of infirmity to Palissy's free limbs in the Bastille,

the preceding seventy-six years of health.

Palissy

was eighty

years old at his death, according to the theory adopted in these pages, and might well, with his face wasted and paled by privation, set in his white hair (for that had been white last

book was published), die

like

an old

man

when

his

of ninety in his

prison.

Guided, then, by the statements of

D'Aubigne, without adopting

them

both.

We

know

either,

La Croix du Maine and it is

possible to reconcile

that Palissy travelled for

some years

TRAVELS OF PALISSY.

193

before his settlement in Saintes, that at Saintes he attempted to live

by

his old calling before attempting anything in pot-

while he had begun his attempts in pottery, and had

tery,

children to care for, before he

salt-marshes

j

that his age,

and

was

upon

to

survey the

we may therefore think it reasonable to suppose when he made the survey, was about thirty-four,

may have

that if so, he

married at the age of twenty-

Various considerations of

seven.

called

which arise out of the have thus led to the

facts

this kind, tedious to relate,

and known dates

belief that

in Bernard's life,

the year 1509,

if

not the

precise date of the birth of Palissy, cannot be far wrong.

was not born

Palissy

in the

If

year 1509, the true date must be

one, two, three, or four years earlier.

NOTE

B.

TRAVELS OF PALISSY.

The

following,

works of Palissy, ence in each case

among

other passages to be found in the

refer to places visited is

to

by him.

The

refer-

a page in the edition of the works of

Palissy published in 1844

:

One day when I was in the islands of Xaintonge on the way from Marennes to Rochelle, I observed a ditch, &c.' Page 37. Once when I was at Tours during the grands jours de Paris, which were then held at the said Tours, there was a GrandVicar, &c.' Page 17. 1

1

You

and Brittany an infinite number of glasses which are corroded on the outside by the injuries of time, &c.' Page 50. There are in France more than four thousand noble houses in which the said convenience might easily be found, especially along the rivers, as you might say along the river 1

will find in the churches of Poitou

1

the

Loire,

Page

A

Gironde,

the

Garonne,

the

Lot,

the

Tar,

&c.

?

58.

description

VOL.

II.

of the Pont de Gard, in Languedoc, and

13

TRAVELS OF PALISSY.

194

town of Nismes, apparently from personal recollection. Page 145. 1 1 have never seen a stranger come into the district of allusion

to

the

who has

Bigorre to live there,

Page 148. lived some years

not soon afterwards taken a

fever.' 1

1

Page

town of Bigorre.'

at Tarbes, principal

153.

Alluding to the waters of Spa, Palissy says

many

villages of the district of Liege

quality.

:

— There are in

springs of the

But the inhabitants of Spa were among the

same

first

in

whence they derive great profit. ... In the Ardennes many of the springs must be equally good, because the yellow clays there testify that iron mines abound.' Page 154. announcing

1

1

theirs,

have often seen such thick vapors rising

in the district of

and they who saw them at the same time with me said that we should soon have rain, being well assured that the said vapors would dissolve into water. I have seen the Ardennes,

on the Pyrenees such vapors many times arising, which on

were frosted into snows, and very shortly afterwards the said snows covered all the land.' Page 164. There are to be seen in many parts of France, especially at Nantes, bridges of wood, before which, &c.' Page 173. The whole essay on the bore in the Dordogne (pages 184the heights

I

shows minute personal acquaintance with the rivers Dordogne and Garonne in the lower part of their courses. I have one which I showed to the master-mason of the 187)

I

fortifications of Brest in

Lower

Brittany,

who assured me,

<5cc

'

Page 219. 1 have seen cleverer tricks done in a little town of Poitou, where there was a doctor, &c.' Page 228. 'The regions of Xaintonge, Gascony, Agen, Quercy, and Toulouse, are very subject to the said worms. ... I under1

take to bear witness only about regions that

I

have frequented.'

Page 247. I

A

upon I

I

stone that I had

hewn from

the borders of the sea.'

a rock near Soubize, a town

Page 276.

never saw natural oysters or their shells in greater

195

TRAVELS OF PALISSY. quantity than they are found petrified in

Page

Ardennes.'

rocks of the

279.

In the town of Angers there

1

many

is

a master-goldsmith,

named

Marc Thomaseau, who showed me a flower reduced Page 284.

stone.'

The Pyrenees, where

I

into

found also

there

Dinan, which

at

is

is

found good marble.

a cold and rainy

It is

On

district.

The mountains of Auvergne there is found crystal. countries bordering on the Ardennes, especially along the road from Meziores to Antwerp a thing more marvellous than the

.

.

.

:

any other district

I

have seen,

for

along the river Meuse, in the

of Liege, the said river passes between mountains

Page 295. References to the Ardennes are very frequent. I have seen the enamellers of Limoges selling, &c.'

which,

fee.

1

'

Page

307. I

I

have seen

all

the region of

Gascony and

the surrounding

places, so overstocked with earthen figures, &;c.' '

I

had seen marl in the

'You may

district of

Armagnac'

Page 308. Page 325.

easily perceive this in the regions of Valois,

and Champagne, where the said marl is found abunPage 331. dantly, and chalk in still greater abundance.' In Lower Burgundy, there is a certain village, in which men dig for an argillaceous earth, similar to marl.' Page 343. Palissy describes (page 850) the change of vegetation to be observed on traversing France from Paris, northward and Berri,

I

southward.

by the inhabitants of Champagne, Berri, and Picardy, that in certain places, fcc' Page 356. The frequent reference to the Ardennes throughout the works of Palissy show that Bernard must have spent some I

I

was

told

time in that corner of France most remote from the Pyrenees, while in the Upper Pyrenees, at Tarbes, he spent some years.

From Antwerp

;

us that he

in the east, to Brest in

the most westerly parts of Brittany

Pyrenees

tells

;

from Brittany

to

the

along the southern coast through Montpellier and

Nismes (both of which towns are mentioned by Palissy) across France between these extreme points, and through

EDITIONS OF THE

196

WORKS OF

PALISSY.

Limousin, Perigord, Auvergne, Berri, Burgundy, Champagne, the extent of the travels of Palissy

may

be traced without

difficulty in his writings.

NOTE EDITIONS OF THE

C.

WORKS OF

''Recepte veritable, par laquelle tous pourront apprendre a multiplier

et

PALISSY.

hommes

les

de France

a augmenter leurs thresors.

Item, ceux qui n'ont jamais eu cognoissance des

lettres, £>our-

ront apprendre une philosophic necessaire a tous les habitants

Item, en ce livre est contenu

de la terre.

le

dessein d un jardin ?

.autant delectable et d'utile invention, qu'il en fut oncques veu.

Item,

le

dessein et ordonnance d'une ville de forteresse, la

plus imprenable qu

r

homme

ouyt jamais parler

maistre Bernard Palissy, ouvrier de terre,

du Roy,

rustiques figulines

Montmorency ville

et

inventeur des

et

de monseigneur

le

Due de

demeurant en la La Rochelle, de Fimprimerie de Barthelemy

pair et connestable de France

de Xaintes.

compose par

:

;

Berton, 1563.'

A

and the copy in the British Museum, where it is bound up with old tracts on gardening, &c, are the only two copies known to be in On the title-page is a man laboring heavenward, existence. copy of

this in the royal library at Paris,

with a large stone tied to his leg, surrounded by the motto, 4 POVRETE EMPECHE LES BONS ESPRITS DE PARVEN1R.' The first

work refers playfully to the books published by alchemists. The volume (without pagination)

part of the

title

of this

contains 132 pages. *

Discours Admirables de la nature des eaux

et fontaines,

tant naturelles qu'artificielles, des metaux, des sels et salines,

des pierres, des terres, du feu et des

emaux

;

avec plusieurs

autres excellents secrets des choses naturelles.

de la Marne, l'agriculture.

introduits

la

fort utile et

Le

tout

Plus, tin traite

necessaire a ceux qui se mellent de

dresse par dialogues, es

theorique et la practique.

Par

M

quels e

sont

Bernard

Palissy, inventeur des rustiques figulines du Roy, et de la

WORKS OF

EDITIONS OF THE

Royne sa mere. A Paris, chez Martin le jeune, du Serpent, devant le college de Cambray, 1580.' Copies of this are very rare.

summary

pages, with a

It is

197

PALISSY.

a neat

a l'enseigne

little

8vo. of 361

of leading sentences and glossary of1

scientific terms.

In 1636 the two works were combined and republished in a

couple of 8vo. volumes, under the following

volume:

first

'

To

titles.

the

Le Moyen de devenir

riche, et la maniere

hommes

de la France pourront

veritable par laquelle tous les

apprendre a multiplier leurs throsors

et

possessions

j

avee

plusieurs autres excellents secrets des choses naturelles, des-

A

quels jusques a present l'on n'a oui.

Paris, chez Robert

Fouet, rue S. Jacques, a l'occasion deuant les Mathurins, 1636.'

To

the second

volume

'

:

Seconde parte du Moyen de devenir

Admiraeles de

riche, contenant les Discours

eaux

&c,

et fontaines,

par

M

e

la nature des

Bernard Palissy, inventeur

des rustiques figulines du Roy.'

This was a catchpenny edition, with additions and omissions,

by which

the heretical Palissy

was

be

to

made

inoffensive to

name

of

Palissy appended to an Epistle to the French People, which

is

There

the orthodox clergy.

is

also in this edition the

a patchwork composition, made of pieces taken from his other writings, held together by the thread of some bookseller's cutter and contriver. The volumes are respectively of 255 and 526 pages.

No

works of Palissy appeared until the publication in a handsome quarto of the (Euvres de Bernard Palissy, Revue sur les Exemplaires de la Biblioteque du Roi, Avec des Notes par M. Faujas de Saint Fond, et des other edition of the

'

;

M.

Additions par

Gobet.

A

Paris.

Chez Ruault, Libraire,

rue de la Harpe, 1777.'

This edition the

life

is

prefaced with a scanty and careless essay on

of Palissy, and extracts from the authors

mentioned him.

It is

who have

very rich in notes and documents, and

forms a handsome volume of 730 pages. Its

chief faults

are the

occasional suppression of plain-

speaking passages, and an arbitrary division and arrangement

WOKKS OF

EDITIONS OF THE

198

of the writings of Palissy, so that there

by which one might detect this *

edition

Medecins'

the

'

is for

first

no clue in the book arrangement.

their original

Declaration des

the

is

PAL1SSY.

Abus

In

Ignorances des

et

time ascribed to Palissy, and

it

is

there printed in the middle of his works.

The

and documents in the edition of 1777 manifest great research, for the purpose of throwing light upon the names of obscure men mentioned by Bernard. The book is very learned in recondite matters, and in the preceding pages I have often been indebted to it for information drawn from sources not within the reach of students in this country. That is

notes

the whole merit of the book.

It

provides

many

little

details

which assist our comprehension of the works of Palissy, but some of its details are useless, and none of them lead to any

The times of

large results.

Palissy are not illustrated at

the prefatory researches into the facts of the

life

all

\

of Palissy are

so careless, that while the date of the survey of the salt-marshes

down Palissy saw

is

set

at

1543,

it

is

said that

'

about the year 1545

J

cup by which his emulation was a blunder incompatible with any thought at all upon excited The volume is further the narrative left to us by the Potter. the enamelled



by the interweaving of conclusions drawn from a work which Palissy most probably did not write, The Declaration des Abus des Medecins,' and which MM. de Saint Fond

vitiated

'

and Gobet

own

lose

no opportunity of pressing into service as their

peculiar, critical discovery.

history of the

time are not trustworthy

Rochefoucault, for example, notes

The few

is

;

allusions

to

the

the Count de la

quoted as a Royalist, and the

on the science and philosophy of Bernard frequently

turn right into wrong, do nothing in the

way

of illustration,

and are worthless altogether. This edition of the works of Palissy is not particularly rare, if I may judge from the facility with which a (second-hand) copy was found for me in Paris, through the agency of Mr. Nutt. Its cost, whole bound, was twelve shillings. A much better edition of the works of Palissy, in a neat small 8vo. volume (pp. 477), priced at about five shillings is entitled: '(Euvkes Comthe last that has been issued





EDITIONS OF THE

WOKKS OF

199

PAL1SSY.

pletes de Bernard Palissy, Edition conforme aux Textes originaux imprimes du vivant de l'Auteur et J.

;

avec des Notes

une Notice Historique. Par Paul-Antoine Cap. ie Rue de Seine, 33, 1844.' J. Dubochet et C

Paris,

,

The preliminary

notice of the

life

of Palissy in this edition

and much more correct than in the quarto of 1777. The works are printed without the least alteration from the original editions, and placed in their true sequence. The best of Gobet's notes, and a few others, are added here and is

much

fuller

while

there,

the

'

Declaration des

Abus

et

Ignorances des

Medecins,' which the editor refuses to ascribe to Palissy, printed in an Appendix, in order that the reader

may

is

find

nothing omitted.

Of in

this edition, I

publisher's

the

writer

is

am

many

afraid, there are only too

warehouse.

The name of

copies

Palissy as

a

works in a

so obscure, that the republication of his

conscientious edition has fallen almost dead from the press.

Since

I

have hope that among the readers of the preceding

narrative there will be

works of Palissy upon

know

that

there

exists

some who are induced their shelves,

it

gives

to

me

place the

pleasure to

an edition neat as any lady could

and accurate as any scholar could think necessary. All the editions here mentioned are to be seen in the library

desire,

Museum. The Museum catalogue adds a Dutch edition of Le Moyen de Devenir Riche, said to have been published at Amsterdam in 1655. Such an edition is nowhere

of the British

else

mentioned, and the book there referred to

an old Dutch pamphlet with some

is

no more than

trifling similarity

of

title.

From

the

Works of

BERNARD PALISSY: Selected for

HIS LIFE

tf)e

Ellustratfon of

AND CHARACTER.

THE ARTIST To

procure for

IN EARTH.

this discourse

more ready compre-

we shall treat it in the form of Dialogue, in which we will introduce two persons, the one will hension,

inquire, the other will reply, as follows



Theory. You promise to teach me the art of and when you gave me so long a discourse Pottery on the diversities of argillaceous earths, I was very much pleased, thinking that you designed to show me the whole of the said art but I was quite amazed :

;

me

when, instead of continuing, you put another time, in order to that

I

have

make me

off until

forget the affection

to the said art.

Practice.

— Do

you think

that

a

man

of sound

judgment would thus yield up the secrets of an art which have cost much in the invention ? As for me I have resolved on doing no such thing, for know your title to them.



Theory. Then you will keep your it

into the grave,

end

will

there

secret thus close,

;

for

it

do not

not charity in you.

is

and nobody

be accursed

I

will get

is

you it

;

will

If

carry

so that your

written, that according

204

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

as each shall have received the gifts of God, so must

he if

distribute

them

to others

may

I

;

conclude from

you do not teach what you know of

mentioned

art, that

Practice.



secrets, as with

remedy

you abuse

my

many

others.

I

art,

know

the before-

God.

the gifts of

not with

is

It

this,

nor with

my

well that a good

malady

against a plague or other pernicious

The secrets of agriculture ought not to be hidden. The hazards and dangers of navigation ought not to be hidden. The word of God ought not to be hidden. The sciences which are the ought not

common

to

be hidden.

servants of the whole republic ought not to

be hidden.

my

But with

art

of treating earth, and

There are several honorable inventions which are polluted and despised through being too common among men. Also, several several other arts,

not

is

it

so.

things are exalted in the houses of princes and nobles,

which,

if

more than

they were

common, would be esteemed no

old kettles.

I

beg you

to consider

our glasses, which, through having been too

among men, have

awhile

common

fallen to so vile a price, that the

who make them live more sorporters. The occupation is noble,

greater part of those didly than Paris

and the men who work

who

at

it

are nobles

;

but several

exercise that art as gentlemen would gladly be

plebeians, and possess wherewith to pay the taxes. it

Is

not a misfortune that has fallen on the glass-workers

of Perigord, Limousin, Xaintonge, Angoulmois, Gas-

cony,

Beam, and

Bigorre, where glasses are so

much

depreciated that they are sold and cried through the villages,

by the same people who cry old clothes and

old iron, in such a

manner

that both those

who make

205

THE ARTIST IN EARTH. and those who

them must work hard

sell

to

live

?

Consider awhile, also, the enamelled buttons (which are an invention so polite), which were at

Now, inasmuch

three francs the dozen.

whom

as those

by

they were invented did not keep their invention

a

in

secret,

gain,

sold for

first

little

while afterwards the greediness of

or the poverty of persons, caused

a

large

so

number to be made, that they were obliged to sell so they are now come into them at a sol the dozen such contempt that men are ashamed to wear them, ;

and say

that they are only

have become too cheap.

fit

for nobodies,

Have you

because they

not seen, too, the

enamellers of Limoges, who, for want of having kept their invention secret,

have caused their

become

art to

so vile that they can hardly get a living at the price

they put upon their works

?

I

assure

you

I

have seen

given at three sols a dozen the figured badges worn

on caps, which badges were so well labored, and their

enamels so well melted over the picture could be prettier.

And

copper, that

no

that has not occurred

once only, but more than a hundred thousand times

and not

in the case

salt-cellars, affairs that

much

and

;

only of those badges, but of ewers,

all

other kinds of vessels and other

they have undertaken to

make

a matter

:

Have you not seen, too, how the engravers have damaged painters and skilled designers ? I remember to have seen stories from the life of Our Lady, printed in large outline, according to the invention of a German, named Albert which to

be regretted.

;

stories fell

once

abundance

in

them was

sold

into

such contempt, on account of the

which they were supplied, for

two

liards,

that

although

each of

admirably

206

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

Have you

designed and drawn.*

cast-making has done injury

not seen, too,

how

clever sculptors?

to several

because, after one of them has spent long time over the

making of some

whatever else

figure of a prince or princess, or

excellent,

is

if

hands of some cast-maker, he

it

should get into the

produce the same

will

thing in so large a quantity that neither the

work

the creator nor his

and he

any more be

shall

will sell the figures at

name of known ;

a vile price, on account

of the diligence with which the casts are manufactured,

laboriously chiselled.

full

piece was

have seen such contempt of

the

before-named cast-making,

of moulded figures, in baked earth, which

had been brought the

at

and markets, and

for sale to fairs

there sold at two liards a-piece that

the

whole land of Gascony and surrounding places

that the

were

I

by

sculpture, caused

whom

him by

great regret of

to the

;

hence

it

occurred,

when people commenced wearing was a man who was imprisoned and

time

tight dresses there

whipped, because he went through the whole town of

Toulouse with a bale cifixes

!

crucifixes

You can

!

Albert Durer.

for these woodcuts,

A

'f

!

them, that

What would

they

sell for

They bear

St.

now?

Pal-

Fond, looked

in the king's collection.

series of tifteen pictures, the

la Busque.'

it is

M. Faunas de

and found them

being 104 by Ik inches. '

Cru-

more worth a small number of men, to make like

issy's diligent editor of 1777,

-j-

dressed

'

understand easily from these examples, and

while for a man, or

They form a

of crucifixes, crying,

— tightly

from a thousand others

*By

full

dimensions of each

the date 1510

and 1511.

Clothed figures of the crucified Saviour

were long common in the south of France and Flanders.

THE ARTIST an

their profit of

number

art,

while living honestly, than for a

have not means

that they

except by profanation of the half made,

we

as

I

it

requires,

precious

would then

I

— please you teach me, as any other man you could be Practice. — would do a good deal If

to

it

as silent

promise

I

for you,

would seek your advancement as heartily as

my own art of

the

child, but

treating

I

earths,

back rather than forward. do anything

you

fear that in showing

you

I

should be

The

The

in pottery.

reason

first is,

pushing you

you must have some property,

means of

living,

I

you

impossible

it is

that ;

you must secondly,

bear the losses that

Now,

this art.

indigent in both respects, other

to

that

is,

be wakeful, nimble, handy, and laborious

accrue from practising

and

if

have need of two things, without which to

you

instruct.

I

were

let

willingly.

Theory. to

my

thought you would lock up it

live

commonly in all those many laborers. Never-

see done

secret as carefully as

to

and leaving things

arts,

which there are too

theless, if

learn

damage

not so very great to inflict such serious

upon one another,

parts at

207

IN EARTH.

since

you are

counsel you to seek some

more indulgent and

less haz-

ardous.

Theory.



I

think that

you say these

things, not

out of the pity that you have for me, but because you find

me

it

troublesome to keep your promise and reveal

the secrets of your art.

that

when you

first

As

for

set yourself to

your plea,

I

to

know

seek the knowledge

you had not much in your pocket to support the losses and mistakes that you say spring out of the said

of

its

labor.

art,

208

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

Practice. pocket, but I

I

— That

true

is

I

;

had not much

in

had means which you do not possess

They

had painting.

better painter than

I



besides,

;

ing, until

I

was, which caused

me

to

be often

labor upon earth

:

also,

that I

while exploring for the said

my

was alchemist enough to live upon which you would find it troublesome to do.

how

ing for

slipped over the time

I

my

well

could earn bread by

art, I

then,

law.

for a long time practised glass-paint-

was assured

I

for

thought me, in our country, a

summoned to draw plans for use in courts of Then, when I had such commissions I was very paid

my

teeth,

You

employed

see,

in search-

art.



I know that you endured much poverty Theory. and pain in searching, but it will not be so with me ;

for that

which gave you so much

to

endure, was the

you were entrusted with a wife and children. Then, while beforehand you possessed no knowledge, and were forced to guess your way, through this you were made unable to quit your household to go and fact that

some shop, and you had no means of engaging servants who might help you somewhat to These drawbacks were the discover the right way.

learn the art in

cause of your checks and miseries so with

me, because, according

will tell

me

losses

in writing all the

to

;

any

will not

be

means of

obviating the

and hazards of the furnace, also the materials of

measures, and composition. not

it

your promise, you

which your enamels are made, and

I

but

make

loss,

to protect

You

their proportions,

doing

so,

why

shall

pretty things without being in danger of

provided that your losses serve as an example

and guide

me

in the exercising of

your

art

?

THE ARTIST IN EARTH.

— Had

Practice.

paper

I

writing for

in

occurred

employed a thousand reams of you all the accidents that have

me upon my

to

to

them

been

and which, even

letters,

to lay falsehood to

my

place before you, in their order,

have the

charge,

all

the

if

you

until

you

among a

by experience

thrust

Nevertheless, that you

thousand troubles.

no occasion

there

be,

you would not believe

written,

have

should

assure

you a thousand other crosses which

could not be taught by

had

may

you

search,

however clever you might

yourself that,

would occur

209

may I

have

will

here

secrets that

I

the art of pottery, together with

discovered in

compositions and different effects of enamels

I

;

will tell you, also, the diversities in argillaceous earths,

which

will

Then,

in

be a point that you ought well

may

order that you

the better understand

these things, you shall have a discourse

with

my

seek for the said calamities that design.

I

I

art

profession, to

precincts

my

will

duty to

hear the

could accomplish shall

me

will

because you

that as

much

beauty and

-

I

am

perfection, except

with

a natural

man

VOL.

II.

me

they will be 14

it

great is

much more

out

and

always

like yourself;

since these things have been possible to

teacher, to

its

perceive that one cannot

extreme labor, that does not come alone, but accompanied by an army of anxieties.

Theory.

now

as you

pursue, or put in execution any design, to work

with

my

then endeavor to avoid

will

my

properly have

will feel little desire to follow

and assure

you

I

commencing it

and thereby you

when you

think that

enter, :

;

had made

I

endured before

heard the whole, you

seek

after

first efforts

note.

to

and

you without a easy,

when

I

210

WRITINGS OF PALISSY. have obtained from you a complete discourse on

shall

whole method of acting, and the means by which

the

you have

attained success.

— According

Practice.

your request, learn that

to

more than five-and-twenty years since there was shown to me an earthen cup, turned and enamelled is

it

much

with so

beauty, that from that time

my own

controversy with

I

entered into

thoughts, recalling to

mind

some people had made to me was painting portraits. Then, seeing

several suggestions that

when

in fun,

I

these were falling out of request in the country

that

where

patronized,

how

T

to

began

I

to think

make enamels,

and other things very

me

prettily,

began

said enamels

because God had gifted ;

and

thereafter,

had no knowledge of clays,

were composed,

the substances

anything

which

I

I

man

gropes in

pounded, in those days,

could suppose likely to

make

and having pounded and ground them,

;

bought a quantity of earthen

pots,

and

after

I

having

some of the materials that had ground upon them, and having marked them, I

broken them I

earthern vessels

Without having heard of what materials the

the dark.

all

make

seek for the enamels, as a

to

little

should discover

with some knowledge of drawing I

also

I

that if

could

I

regardless of the fact that I

was

dwelt, and that glass-painting

I

in pieces,

set apart in writing

I

put

what drugs

I

had put upon each, as

made a furnace to my fancy, I set the fragments down to bake, that I might see whether my drugs were able to produce some a

memorandum

whitish color

because basis of

I

:

;

then, having

for

I

had heard

all

others.

sought only after white enamel, it

said that white

Then, because

I

enamel was

the

had never seen

211

THE ARTIST IN EARTH.

by what degree of heat said enamel should be melted, it was impossible for to get any result in this way, though my chemicals

earth baked, nor could the

me

tell

I

should have been right; because, at one time the mass

might have been heated too much, little

and when the said materials were baked too

;

or burnt,

could not at

I

the reason

all tell

would

no success, but

with

my

the accomplishment of

manage

my

I

met

on the

me some

intentions,

way

in the

the fire

But again,

required. still

blame

throw

ones, or at least could have afforded

able to

why

little

which, sometimes, perhaps, were the right

materials,

fault

another time too

at

working thus,

in

named

grosser than that above

trial-pieces in the furnace, I

consideration; so that

the

if

for

any good

had been

my

materials

I

committed a

:

for in putting

arranged them without

materials had been the

best in the world, and the fire

impossible

I

if

that

hint for

also the

result

having blundered several times

fittest, it

follow.

to

at a great

was

Thus,

expense, and

much labor, I was every day pounding and grinding new materials, and constructing new furnaces, which cost much money, and consumed my wood and

through

my time. When

I

had fooled away several years thus impru-

dently with sorrow and sighs, because arrive at

my

intention,

I

could not at

all

and remembering the money

spent, I resolved, in order to avoid such large expenditure, to

send the chemicals that

of some

mind,

I

potter

;

and having

I

would

settled

test to the kiln

this

within

my

purchased afresh several earthen vessels, and

having broken them

in

pieces, as

was

my

custom,

I

covered three or four hundred of the fragments with

212

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

enamel, and sent them

my

and a half from potters that they

to

a pottery distant a league

dwelling, with a request to the

would please

to

permit those

be baked within some of their vessels willingly

came

when they had baked

but

;

my

to take out

trial-pieces,

:

this

trials to

they did

their batch,

and

received nothing

I

but shame and loss, because they turned out good for

nothing

enough, and

my

the required

And

because

were not put

trials

I

had

at that time

I

so

;

I

my

science.

not

before said) on

succeeded,

my

I

materials

made a number of new comthem to the same potters, to do with

and beginning afresh, pounds, and sent

to

no knowledge of the

experiments had

threw the blame (as

as before

into the furnace in

manner and according

why my

reason

by those potters was not hot

for the fire used

;

I

continued to do several times, always

with great cost, loss of time, confusion, and sorrow.

When I saw that I could not at all in this way come at my intention, I took relaxation for a time, occupying myself in my art of painting and glass-working, and comported myself as

more

were not zealous

if I

the secret of enamels.

into

to dive

Some days

any

after-

wards, there arrived certain commissaries, deputed by the king to establish the gabelle in the district of Xain-

tonge,

who

appointed

country surrounding of the world.

ended, and

I

my

resumed ;

whether

in

mentioned

all

to

the

map

the islands and the

salt-marshes in our part

Then, when the

said

commission was

found myself paid with a

little

money,

I

affection for pursuing in the track of the

and seeing

enamels

me

my own potters,

that

I

had been able

to

do nothing,

furnaces or in those of the beforeI

broke about three dozen earthen

THE ARTIST IN EARTH. pots



213

of them new; and having ground a large

all

quantity of different materials, the said pots with

my

I

covered

the bits of

all

chemicals, laid on with a brush

:

but you should understand, that in two or three hun-

dred of those pieces there were only three covered with each kind of compound. took

these pieces

all

and carried them

my

whether

in order to see

Having done to

this,

I

a glass-house,

chemicals and compounds

might not prove good when

tried in

a glass-furnace.

Then, since these furnaces are much hotter than those

when I had them drawn out, I observed that some of my compounds had begun to melt and for this cause I was still more encouraged of potters', the next day

;

to search for the white

so

much

enamel, upon which

caused

enamel

this

;

me

to

for

did not give

I

little

symptom, which

work

for the

my

had begun

did nothing but

I

go

house and the adjacent glass-

houses, aiming to succeed in I

then perceived,

discovery of the said white

which two years

and come between

when

I

myself any

two years beyond the time already men-

tioned, during

that

had spent

labor.

Concerning other colors trouble

I

to

my

lose

intentions.

my

God

willed

courage, and was

gone

for the last time to a glass-furnace,

with

me

having a

man

carrying more than three hundred kinds of

was one among those pieces which was melted within four hours after it had been placed in the furnace, which trial turned out white and pol-

trial-pieces, there

ished in a

way

that

caused

me

such joy as made

was become a new creature

think

I

from

that time

enamel, but

I

I

had the

was very

far

full

;

and

I

me

thought that

perfection of the white

from having what

I

thought.

214

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

This

was a very happy one

trial

unhappy

in

another

— happy,

because

trance upon the ground which

unhappy, because

it

I

it

me

gave

en-

have since gained; but

was not made with substances

measure or proportion.

the right

one sense, but very

in

in those days, that directly

which was singularly

in

was so great an ass

I

had made the said enamel,

I

beautiful,

although

myself

set

I

make

to

had never understood

vessels

of

earths

and having employed the space of seven or

;

earth,

eight months in

erect

for

was

it

was

I

built

the water with

pay a single man

with

my

my

as

it

my

past

toil,

was tempered

go myself

I

I

to

glass-

can to I ;

tell

my-

should also

it

seek the bricks

to

baking, but

had no means

I

I

when

succeeded it

came

to

endured suffering and labor such

no man would believe.

after

mortar, that

back, because

first

I

mason

for aid in this affair.

pots in the

the second baking,

my own

which

requisite that I should

and carry them upon to

with more labor than

should temper

began

I

of the

that

like

requisite that I should be the

self, that I

draw

the said vessels,

myself a furnace

workers, which for

making

I

For instead of reposing

was obliged

work

to

for the

space

of more than a month, night and day, to grind the materials of which

glass-furnace

at the

had made that beautiful enamel

I ;

and when

had ground them,

I

covered therewith the vessels that done, I

I

put the

fire into

had seen done

my

vessels into the furnace, to bake

which

I

had spread over them

thing for me, for though

I

:

this

furnace by two mouths, as

glass-houses

at the

had made

I

I

;

I

also put

my

and melt the enamel

but

spent six

before the said furnace, feeding

;

was an unhappy days and six nights

it

it

with

wood

inces-

THE ARTIST IN EARTH. santly through

make I

enamel melt,

the said

And

desperation.

was not possible and I was like a man

two mouths,

its

little

my

I

began, once more,

pound and grind the before-named materials,

my

time without letting

had double labor,

When

in

enamel there might of the substance which should make the

others melt; and, seeing this,

fire.

to

it

although quite stupefied with labor,

counselled to myself, that in

be too

215

to

furnace cool

way

in this

:

the I

pound, grind, and maintain the

my

had thus compounded

I

all

to

enamel,

I

was

forced to go again and purchase pots, in order to prove the

said

compound

vessels which

the

new

— seeing

had

I

And

had made myself.

I

pieces with the said enamel,

the furnace, keeping the

thereupon occurred

me,

failed

I

fire

me

to

caused great mortification having

that

a

new

being burnt also,

I

my

the flooring of

was forced

I

them

into

height; but

its

wood

the

that

burn the palings

my

garden

;

which

burn the tables and

to

house, to cause the melting of the

second composition. not speak, for

the

misfortune which

to

which maintained the boundaries of

put

I

— namely,

was forced

all

having covered

at

still

lost

was

I

suffered

an anguish

quite exhausted



that

I

can-

and dried up by

was more than a month since my shirt had been dry upon me. Further to console me, I was the object of mockery and even

the heat of the furnace,

it

;

those from the

town

way my as a

whom

that

I

credit

solace

was due, ran crying through

was burning my floors was taken from me, and

!

I

And

in this

was regarded

madman.

Others said that

I

was laboring

make

to

which was a scandal under which

I

false

money,

pined away, and

216

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

bowed head through shame I was in debt in

slipped with

man

put to

:

had two children

at

me, saying

at

it

All these things assailed ;

but for

a

and

several places,

him

right for

left off

to die

of

following his trade.

my ears when that there

all

men

on the contrary,

but,

was

hunger, seeing that he had

the street

streets, like

nurse, unable to pay the nurses;

no one gave me consolation, jested

the

I

still

passed through

remained some

hope which encouraged and sustained me, inasmuch as the last trials thereafter

I

had turned out tolerably well, and

thought that

living, although I

was

hear afterwards)

will

tented

more

if I

make a

;

far

I

knew enough enough from

get

to

my you

that (as

and you must not be discon-

rather long discourse, to

attentive to the matters

make you

which concern your

in-

terest.

When

had dwelt with

my

:

found the object of thy search

defamers again affair

regrets a

because

little

was no one who had pity upon me, I said to my Wherefore art thou saddened, since thou hast

there soul

I

:

;

will live to

Labor now, and the

?

be ashamed.

But

my

spirit said

You have no means wherewith to continue this how will you feed your family, and buy what-

ever things are requisite to pass over the four or

five

months which must elapse before you can enjoy the produce of your labor?

Then, when

sorrow and debating in

courage

;

my

spirit,

and having considered

I

was thus seized with

hope gave that

it

me

a

little

would take

too long to produce a batch entirely with

me

my own

hands, and more promptly to cause to appear the secret

which

I

common

had discovered of the white enamel, potter

and gave him certain drawings,

I

took a

in

order

217

THE ARTIST IN EARTH. that

and whilst he made these

designs,

myself over some medallions thing, for

was forced

I

my

When we

house.

months, and

six

work,

I

had

to

whom,

of

my

to

make

had no means whatever

I

had labored

clothes

any materials

bake the finished

to

was forced

I

for the erection of

to take

down

of the

glass-workers,

again.

Then, because the

which

had

I

in

to give part

Then, because

wages.

for

that

for the space of

a furnace and discharge the potter,

want of money,

for

occupied

I

but this was a pitiable

;

was required

it

things,

maintain the said potter in a

to

tavern upon credit, because in

my own

he might make vessels in accordance with

my

had not

I

furnace,

built after the

order to use the

I

began

manner

materials

had been so

said furnace

strongly heated for six days and nights, the mortar and the brick in

manner,

it

were

liquefied

that in loosening the

many

bruised and cut in so

and

masonry

my pottage with my fingers When I had pulled down the

requisite

without

much

the water aid,

to

build

the

difficulty

since

my

had I

I

wrapped

in rags.

said furnace,

had

fingers

was obliged

which was not

other, ;

I

places that

to eat

such a

vitrified in

to fetch for

it

was done

myself

and the mortar, and the stone, without any

and without any repose.

the before-named

work

by borrowing, or

in

to

the

This done, first

other ways,

I

submitted

baking, and then, I

found means

to

making the enamel for the coverwork, which turned out well from the

obtain materials for

ing of the said first

baking

;

but

when

I

had bought the said materials,

there followed a labor for all

my

wits; for after

I

me which appeared

to baffle

had wearied myself, through

several days, in pounding and calcining

my

chemicals,

218

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

had

I

which

grind them, without any aid, in a handmill

to

desire that

had

I

succeed

to

do things which

When

in

were ground,

having put and arranged them

make

to

my

I

all



my

when

I

my

and continued

livres,

had some sign and hope of

the next day,

my

then,

draw out of

my

furnace being in

came

draw out

to

having previously removed the

work,

the

within the furnace,

all

enamels being melted, and of :

enamel

said

furnace three or four hundred

good order

covered

I

the fire, thinking to

the said fire until

:

should have esteemed impossible.

I

the said colors

began

to turn

my enterprise, made me

vessels and medallions with the

I

men

usually required two strong

it

fire,

my

sorrows and distresses were so abundantly augmented

countenance

that I lost all

were good, and happened

to the

;

work was good, two accidents had furnace, which had spoilt all and that ;

:

fortune,

my

mortar, of which

of the

flints,

my

others, that

and

loss I

misfortune

your gain.

had

built

my

It

I

will

tell

will tell

may

to

that

my

you

you a you be

was because the

furnace, had been

which, feeling the vehemence of the

same time

enamels

my

you may be cautious against them, what they were also, after these, I

number of

my

though

for,

enamels had begun

fire

full

(at

to liquefy),

making a variety of cracks said furnace. Then, because

burst into several pieces,

and explosions within the the splinters of these the enamel,

flints

struck against

which was already

into a glutinous matter,

held them attached on

liquefied

retained all

sides

the

of

my

work,

and converted flints,

and

vessels

and

said

my

medallions, which, except for that, would have been beautiful.

So, knowing that

my

furnace was tolerably

THE ARTIST IN EARTH.

warm,

I let it

concerned than

my

for

dollars;

can

I

then

;

I

was more

you, and not without cause,

tell

me more

furnace cost I

day

cool until the next

219

than twenty-six gold

had borrowed the wood and the chemicals, and

so had borrowed part of said work.

I

had held

my hope of food in making the my creditors in hope that they

would be paid out of the money which would proceed from the pieces made

why

the reason

morning when

several began to hasten to

was

I

commence

to

batch. Yet by this means,

inasmuch

as,

said furnace

in the

my

me

the drawing of

drawing the said work,

in

bestrewn with

my

for

;

morsels of

little

after the

my

sorrows were redoubled

nothing but shame and confusion all

which was

;

flint,

:

received

I

pieces were

were

that

at-

tached so firmly to each vessel, and so combined with

when one passed

the enamel, that said

cut like razors

flints

way lost, a mean price

there were

in this

at

:

;

but,

the

hand over

and although the work was still

some who would buy

my

honor,

broke

I

in

the entire batch from the said furnace, and lay

any means proaches

gave

— not without to

feed

in the

me

my

house

maledictions

the

it

because that would have been a

decrying and abasing of

melancholy

it,

family ;

;

cause, for

in

my

:

I

I

pieces

down

in

had no longer

had nothing but

re-

place of consolation they neighbors,

who had heard

was nothing but a fool, and that I might have had more than eight francs for the things that I had broken; and all this talk was brought to this affair, said that I

mingle with

When

I

my

grief.

had remained some time upon the bed, and

had considered within myself, into a pit, his duty

would be

that if a to

man

endeavor

should

fall

to get out

220

WRITINGS OF PALISSY. i

again

I,

;

paintings, little

being in like case, set myself

and

money

in various

then

;

I

and hazards were anything I

in heating

against

my

me from making good

I

of

remained

pieces

in the

;

same

and art.

;

for the

vehemence

so that in those parts which had

;

my

vessels

were rough and

because the enamel, being liquefied, had In spite of

united with the said ashes. I

losses

had carried a quantity of ashes

fire

pieces

;

to labor

had not thought

been touched by the ashes, ill-polished

my

another furnace there occurred an acci-

dent of which of the flame

took pains to recover a

I

and there was no longer

past,

betook myself (as before)

But

make some

said within myself, that

all

hinder

to

ways

to

in

hope of remounting

of the said art

;

for

caused

I

to

these losses,

all

in fortune

by means

be made, by certain

number of earthen lanterns, to contain my vessels when I put them in the furnace in order that, by means of the said lanterns, my vessels might be protected from the ash. The invention proved a potters, a large

;

good one, and has served

me

to the present day.

But

having guarded against risk from ashes, other faults

and accidents occurred it

might prove

too

little,

and

to all

be too

little.

when 1 had made a batch, much baked, or another time as,

would be

inexperienced, that or too

;

lost

in that

way.

I

could not discern the too

I

One time my work was baked

but not baked properly behind obviate that, and burnt

;

my work

another time

was so much,

in front, I

tried to

behind, but the front

was not baked at all sometimes it was baked on the sometimes my right hand, and burnt on the left; enamels were put on too thinly, sometimes they were ;

too thick, which caused

me

great losses

;

sometimes,

THE ARTIST IN EARTH.

when I had some were In short,

different in color,

burnt before the others had been melted.

blundered for the space of fifteen or sixteen

I

When

years.

enamels

in the furnace

221

I

had learnt

guard against one danger,

to

came another about which I had not thought. During this time I made several furnaces, which caused me great losses before I understood the way At last I found means to make to heat them equally. there

several vessels of different enamels intermixed in the

manner of

That fed me

jasper.

upon these

but, while feeding

several years;

for

things,

sought always

I



work onward with expenses and disbursements When I had as you know that I am doing still. discovered how to make my rustic pieces,* I was in to

greater trouble and vexation than before

made a

certain

number of

my

them

ful

and well melted, others

bake,

burnt, because they

were

rials, that

for having

rustic basins,

and having

enamels turned out some beauti-

put

to

;

ill

melted

were composed of

fusible in different

others were

;

different mate-

degrees



the green

of the lizards was burnt before the color of the serpents

was melted

;

and the color of the serpents,

lobsters,

tortoises,

and crabs, was melted before the white had

attained

any beauty.

All

these

such labor and heaviness of

render I

my

thought

enamels I

me

I

could

same degree of

heat,

spirit, that

fusible at the

caused

defects

my

should be at the door of

Also, while laboring at such affairs,

before

I

sepulchre.

was, for the

* Small models of the wild animals, reptiles, &c, of the country, where these rustic pieces, colored after nature. Kustic basins were the bowls or plates, about which they were '

introduced as ornaments.

'

222

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

my

space of ten years, so wasted in

person, that there

my

was no form nor prominence of muscle on legs

also the said legs

;

were

at once,

with the

were throughout of one

garters with

so that the

when

stockings

which

too.

of Xaintes considering

my

ness,

and, above

that in

I

things,

considered good. nevertheless,

I

I

heels,

about the

miseries and weari-

my own

house

was despised and mocked by

which kept house tolerably

accidents

the

:

which

ward myself, brought me more all

all

always made some vessels of different

the diversities of earth, with

than

my

have no peace, nor do anything that was

could

colors,

size,

stockings,

walked

often

I

fields

all

my

tied

I

walked, down upon

I

arms or

but, in doing this, I

thought to for-

a

loss in

time

little

For having made

before.

some were burnt some received the

several vessels of different earths,

before

others

the

were baked

;

enamel, and proved afterwards extremely suited purpose

Then, because on the same

whence

I

my work who came I

my

in

my

all

enterprises.

enamels did not work well together

thing,

I

was deceived many times

derived always vexation and sorrow.

hope

theless, the

within

me

others deceived

;

me

that

so like a to see all

pursued

I

had caused

man,

me,

my affairs

me

that often,

did

I

was very

my

to

which succeeded well

Never-

proceed with

amuse people

to

best to laugh, although

sad. in

such a manner that

a good deal of work from one part of

allied with the

my

to

;

but

I

my

had another

I

received business,

affliction,

before-named, which was that the heat,

the cold, the winds, and rains, and droppings, spoilt the

largest portion of

my

work before

I

baked

it

;

so

223

THE ARTIST IN EARTH. that I

was obliged

nails

to

make

to

borrow carpentry,

Then, very often having build, I was obliged to make

with.

shift

nothing wherewith to

green boughs and

shift with

my

means augmented, a

built

as

hosiers,

knot of old

my

better

little

art could not

said that

I

which

;



some

much

blamed

did nothing but boggle, and

art

space,

me

their pity, since I

forced to use things necessary for

my

artisans,

without regarding that

be exercised without

conveniences which

when

and notaries, a

sergeants,

all those,

again,

had done, and

I

caused

which should have touched

that

Then

sticks.

undid what

1

shoe -makers,

women

and

laths, tiles,

my house

required

for

was

to build the

and what

;

is

worse, the incitement to the said mockeries proceeded

from those of

mv own

house,



who would have had me

work without appliances a thing more than unreasonable. Then the more the matter was unreasonable, the more extreme was my affliction. I have been for several years, when, without the means of covering my furnaces, I was every night at the mercy of the and winds, without receiving any help, aid or

rains

consolation, except from the

one

side,

and the dogs

that

owls that screeched on

howled upon the other

sometimes there would arise winds and storms, which

blew I

in

such a manner up and down

was constrained

labor,

to quit the

and several times have found

and having nothing dry upon rains which had fallen, I would go near dawn,

dragged through

dressed all

turning thus to retire,

the I

like

furnaces that

whole with

all,

or

my

a

that

me to

loss of

having quitted because of the

bed

at

man who

puddles

in

would walk

my

midnight has

the town,

been

and

rolling, without

224

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

a candle, falling

one side and the other

to

drunk with wine,

man

a

like

with great sorrows, inasmuch

filled

as having labored long

saw

I

my

labor wasted

;

then,

manner soiled and drenched, I have found in my chamber a second persecution worse than the first, which causes me to marvel now that I was not consumed with my suffering. Why do you make me out so long a Theory. retiring in

this



tale

?

to assist

me from my intention than given me an excellent discourse

rather to divert

It is

You have

it.

upon the accidents which happen but that

is

of no use

enamels you have Practice. tin,

unless to scare

told

— The

in the art of pottery,

me

me,

for of the

nothing yet.

enamels which

I

use are

made

of

lead, iron, steel, antimony, sapphire of copper, sand,

the herb glass-wort, ashes of tartar, litharge, stone of

Those are

Perigord.*

the materials proper for

the

makirg of my enamels. Theory. But see, now, when you tell me that, you tell me nothing for I have already found from your statements that you lost much before you mixed



;

the enamels in a right proportion

very well that shall not

if

;

therefore,

you know

you do not give me the proportions,

know what

to

do with

my

I

knowledge of the

materials.

Practice.

— The

proportions of

my

more than of what I

am

errors

committed

I

enamels, gave

in

mixing the

me knowledge

things were not suitable.

of

Therefore

of opinion that you should work to find the said

proportions, as

I

have done *

;

otherwise you will have

Manganese.

225

THE ARTIST IN EARTH.

may

science too cheap, and perhaps that despise

it

for

:

who

the world

and

I

know

well, that there are

who have

but they

;

expense and

great

to

no people in

give easy bargains of their mysteries

who

their arts, excepting those

no cost

cause you

them

get

practised

at

almost

them through

do not part with them so

toil,

lightly.

Theory.

— You

would

things as wonderfully excellent. science, of

which we were

then preach

excellence

its

Practice.

now

— That

;

art,

means.

well

some

It is

you might

a statement

is

out of which

I

you

shall

known

;

and since you

know no more

of

it

call

by

it

my

that in the said art there are

kneading of the earth

some branches of

it

;

which produce vessels

ordinary service of the kitchen, without any

for the

exact form or measure

they

;

fire,

ought not

it

properly

a

batch

be compared with anything

to

fire

manage when it is to

must be regulated by a philosophy is

no wit so

fine

as to find no

and avoid being frequently deceived.

manner of arrangement

the

that

work, especially

of

so careful, that there it

be called mechani-

For you must know,

enamelled, the

labor in

may

concerns the government of

but forasmuch as

mechanical.

for

were some great

but you esteem so high-

parts mechanical, as the

there are

the

these

perceive that you are unworthy to hear anything

a mechanical

;

it

in great need,

of the mystery of the said art

cal

If

regard

which can be easily dispensed

ly a mechanical art, with.

me

have

in

the

furnace,

As it

requires a peculiar geometry. Item. VOL.

— You

II.

know

that there are

15

made

in several

226

WRITINGS OF PALISSY. earthen

places

vessels,

which

adjusted

are

geometrical a way, that a great vessel

a

mechanical

call that

Do you

?

not

supported on

is

even while yet the clay

foot,

little

so

in

soft

is

know

:

that

do you

measur-

ing by the compass ought not to be called mechanical,

very common, or because the workmen so

for being

engaged are poor

Nevertheless, the arts which re-

?

and measures,

quire compass, rules, numbers, weights

ought not will thus

since

you

rank as mechanical the art of treating earth,

and scarcely esteem

how

understand

Consider a

its utility, I

greater than

it is

little,

not altogether

The

And

be called mechanical.

to

how many

arts

I

will

now make you

am

able to explain.

would be useless,

if

without the art of treating earth.

lost,

refiners of gold

and

silver

must cease from

their

work, for they could do nothing without furnaces and earthen vessels

inasmuch as no stone or other matter

;

could be found, which might serve to contain melting metals, Item.

work

there were no vessels of earth.

if

— The

have

they

for

;

glass-workers must cease from

ingredients of their

The

glass, if

goldsmiths, founders,

or kind

it

may

no

be,

all

means not

of

melting

in vessels

their

the

of earth.

melting of whatever sort

would be

at

an end, and there

would not one be found who could dispense with clay.

Look

also at the forges of the farriers

and you bricks

;

will see that all the said forgeries are

for if they

Look made of

at

they are

earth;

all

the

furnaces,

;

of

you

will find

even those who labor upon

earths use earthern furnaces, as potters

made

were of stone, they would be soon

consumed.

and

and locksmiths,

in short, there

is

tilers,

brick-makers,

no stone, mineral, or

THE ARTIST IN EARTH.

227

other matter, which could serve for the building of a

furnace for glass, lime, or any of the before-named

would

purposes, which

You

how

see also

any length of time.

for

last

common

useful

earthen vessels are

community, you see also how great

to the

You know

of earth for the covering of houses. in

many

regions they

know

no other covering than pose

to

be the

our fountains

utility It

?

wholesomer than

is

that

leaden channels.

that

nothing of slate, and have

tiles

how

;

great do you sup-

of earth in making conduits from well

earthen

through

flows

the utility

is

known

pipes

that the

water which

much

is

and

better

which has been brought through

How many

towns are there, think

you, built of bricks, inasmuch as there were no means of getting stone to build them with

How,

?

think you,

did our ancestors estimate the usefulness of the art of

treating earth

well

It is

?

known

by

Egyptians and other nations

many sumptuous

have caused structed

that the

the art of treating earth

several emperors and kings, built

their

buildings

to

be con-

there have been

:

who have caused

to

be

great pyramids of earth, in order to perpetuate

memory

;

and some of them have done

this,

fearing that their pyramids would be crumbled by

fire,

Then, knowing the

fire

if

they had been of stone.

was powerless against the buildings of baked earth, they had them built of bricks witness the children of Israel, who were marvellously oppressed while making ;

bricks for the said buildings. all the

have

would put

If I

uses of the art of treating earths,

done

;

wherefore

I

yourself the remainder of

leave its

you

uses.

in writing

I

never should

to

think within

As

for

its

reputa-

228 tion, if

WRITINGS OF PALISSY. it

be

now

despised,

it

Historians certify to us, that earth

was

invented,

has not always been so.

when

vessels

the art of treating

of marble,

alabaster,

chalcedony, and jasper, were cast into contempt

even many earthen vessels were consecrated service of the temples.

;

to

that

the

THE POTTER'S CLAY. Between there that

it

is

is

the different kinds of argillaceous earths

so great a difference, the one from the other,

man to be able to relate among them. Some are sandy,

impossible for any

the contrariety that

is

white and very thin, and for these fire is

kind

reasons a great

of

because

earth it

very good for making crucibles,

is

endures a very great

fire

;

that are in them,

bend and liquefy when they endure

have seen some

great heat.

I

the arches

were

were quite

full

in

tilers'

furnaces of which

such sort liquefied, that the vaults

of pendant forms, as you see the icicles

from the gutters of the house during are other kinds, which, in pottery or in bricks,

when they

the furnace, lest

with

it

it

frosts.

are baked, whether

drawing

in

take cold

;

and what

his affair is

are constrained to stop

if

it

pieces would

felt

the very slightest

all

turn out cracked.

Savigny, in Beauvoisis, which

I

wind

from

more, those all

holes of their furnace as soon as their batch

because

There

needful that the master of

it is

work take good heed,

who work

there are other

on account of the metallic substances

earths which,

the

Such

needed before they are baked properly.

the ventis

baked,

in cooling, the

There

is

a kind at

think has not in France

230 its

WRITINGS OF PALISSY. like

being at it

for

;

endures a marvellous

it

all injured,

and has

fire,

advantage

this

without also, that

allows itself to be shaped more slenderly and deli-

cately than

baked,

it

made

substance

which are black

that causes that the

and when they are

in their essence,

paper

like

when they

among them

there are

reduced

said vessels are

come

and cause the

stones,

nature

in the

to lime,

and suddenly when air,

they swell

vessels are lost,

;

and by

however great

employed upon them.

where

because the said stones

is

baking

this

means many

the labor one

may have

There are other kinds of earth

which are very good, and very well endure the but they are so vain and lax that one cannot light vessels

them a

little

fire

;

make any

when one would form down towards the bottom,

of them, because high,

it

sinks

not being able to sustain It is

be-

stones which are in the

little

this

;

which when

said vessel to split in the place

they are enclosed, and

were calcined

little

evil

humidity of the

feel the

to

are

baked they become red.

are

the vessels are baked, the

kinds

other

;

There are some kinds which are of

they

which pro-

There are other kinds of earth

baked they are white

cause

extremely

with the said earth hold water quite as

well as glass vessels.

yellow, and

and

;

it is

polish,

vitrificative

little

own

its

and when

the others;

takes a

ceeds from vessels

any of

itself.

a general rule, that

all

argillaceous earths, and

especially the finest, are subject to crackle at the fire

before

they are

baked

;

for this

work with them are obliged

to

reason, those

add

to the

fire

by little, in order to chase the moisture which is work so that if the pieces which one bakes are ;

who little

in the

thick,

the potter's clay.

231

and there are many of them, it will be necessary to maintain the fire sometimes three or four days and nights

and

;

he who

shall

work

his

there

work has once begun

the

conduct the before

cool

to

fire to it

many

fall

is

perfection,

in

And by

lost.

have had great

potters

and

to heat,

asleep, and suffer

baked

be

no help but the work

is

accident

I

if

such

losses.

once saw certain modellers of images, instructed

in the art of treating earth

by hearsay only, and

suffi-

new in the knowledge of earths, who, after having made some images, put them into the furnaces ciently

bake them, according

to

when they began

to

to their

But

understanding.

put on the large

fire,

it

was a

pleasant thing enough (though not a cause of laughter to

us

all) to

hear these images burst, and

between themselves

make

like a multitude of

a battery

harquebusades

and discharges of cannon, and the poor master very

who had been robbed of his purse day being come for drawing the images out of

vexed, like one the

furnace, the furnace was no sooner opened than he

some with cracked heads, others with the legs broken

images, was

;

so that the poor

much

to find the pieces

;

to

shattered

his

had trouble enough

some were as small as get them together, he was for flags

saw

arms and

for

make knobs

the

man, having drawn

disturbed, and

and not being able obliged to

for

:

flies,

often

and other matters out

•*••••

of the said images. •

Once

I



had collected some of the earth of Poitou,

and had labored upon

months before

I

had

this

my

space of six

for the full

batch complete

;

because the

232

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

vessels that

had made were very elaborate, and of a

I

Now, in making the said vessels of the earth of Poitou, I made some of them of the earth of Xaintonge, on which I had worked for some somewhat high

price.

years before, and was sufficiently experienced in the

degree of the

and thinking I

loss

;

might bake

that all earths

my

being baked sufficiently,

would be so too;

but

I

thought that the other work

when

I

came

joke for

me

came

;

to

to

enamel

my

was an unpleasant because as many pieces as were enamdissolve and fall to pieces, as a limestone

vessels, those feeling the moisture,

elled

at a like degree.

work which was earth of Poitou among of earth of Xaintonge, which caused me a great inasmuch as the work in earth of Xaintonge

baked

that

which was needed by the said earth,

fire

would do soaked

in

water

;

and

it

at the

vessels of the earth of Xaintonge

same

time, the

were baked

in the

same furnace, and at the same degree of heat as the above named, and turned out very well. You see, then,

how a man who

labors in the art of earth

is

always an apprentice, because of the unknown nature of the diversities of earth.

THE NATURALIST LOOKING OUT ON EVIL DAYS.*

— Truly

you have given me a good where do you think to find account, and a sad one Would you be a place convenient for your design ? fool enough to incur such great expense, for the mere Question.

;

sake of a fine garden

Answer.



I

?

have

told

you,

there will be found in France

upon

this point,

more than four thousand

granges or noble mansions, near which are conditions

named

that

fulfilled the

necessary for the erection of the before-

garden, and of this there can be no doubt

as for the expense, which

you pronounce

to

;

and

be exces-

you will find more than a thousand gardens in France which have cost more than mine would cost and then do you regard the cost that is to bring you

sive,

such delight, and a revenue of laudations

— Good

Question.

;

but

one might

pleasure, and would do better, to

good armor,

to attain

military art,

and then,

* Palissy,

?

have greater

buy good horses and

some rank and charge in traversing the country,

in

the

many

having sketched in a dialogue his idea of a de-

lectable garden, continues as above.

234

WRITINGS OF PAL1SSY.

would appear before you food,

and

furniture.

man

mule, another

make

gifts

of lodging,

One man would be

giving you a

to

a horse, which would

no more cost than the whistling

at

much more

get

afforded

might chance

to

for

priest,

a

catch

and you would finger the revenues

know many who by such means, having purchased estate of Seneschal of the Long Robe, have come

I

their

to hold the

estate

of Seneschal of the Short Robe,*

which has been the way

in

which they have become

And by

esteemed and honored, feared and dreaded. such means their purses have been

and even these

in these late troubles

men have

their lives,

Answer.

how

I

with booty

;

you know how some of

who spared

which were closely sought

— The reasons You know

unseasonable.

filled

received large presents for granting

favor to the Huguenots,

first

by

by some

benefice, which you could cause to be held

cook of a

you

to

and so you would

;

pleasure than could be

Also you

your garden.

come

would build

nothing to save after.

you allege are wicked and well that

my

I

told

you from the

me

garden, to serve

as a

city of refuge, a place of retirement in these perilous

and

days

evil

;

and

that

I

would do

and malice of the world,

iniquity

pure freedom

;

from the

this to fly

to serve

God

and now you come and tempt

me

with

with

execrable avarice and evil invention.

And

do you think that

office of

if

a

man

has bought an

Seneschal, whether long-robed or short-robed,

# Seneschal of the Long Robe was chief of a subaltern court of justice.

Seneschal of the Short Robe was

justice in a province.

first

officer

of

THE NATURALIST LOOKING OUT ON EVIL DAYS.

through avarice or ambition, that in

and has done

this

so doing he

becomes a man well

that

235

some have been

off?

know

I

well

the buyers of such greatness, in

order that they might be feared, and satisfy their ven-

geance, and that they might swell their purses out with Is

well off?

Greatly do they

You know vile

den

it

well that Saint Paul says nothing

many

judgment is

Item,

you have

that

to be held

You and

told

whether

might

I

the

me

that

me

more

is

well

known

is

forbid-

it

gifts the

conclude that

you give me.

had bought any

if I

of Seneschal or any other,

office

up some benefice

fish

advise

may

I

advice

in

by a cook or a

that

could cause

I

priest.

then to commit wickedness, simony,

and you know

theft,

is

it

because by

gifts,

and so

;

good

nothing

there

authority,

to take

corrupted

is

Item,

passages of Holy Scripture,

judges

to the

that

the

revenue

of the

benefices ought not to be given except to those

word of God

will faithfully administer the

others

who

with certainty,

who

you, shepherds, wool, and

Is

;

should tremble

which we

my

require

suffer

And at this

and as

;

can

written

fat

flock at

it

for

at

in

you

tell

in the '

this

Prophet

Woe

be

to

and clothe you with scattered

upon the

your hands.'

which these

in truth,

day

I

prophet says,

eat the

a sentence ?

is

it

for the

leave

I will

that not

;

And

lost.

because

Ezekiel, chap. 34

mountains

who

enjoy themselves on the revenue, they are

accursed, damned, and

the

are

short of that.

fall

than the avaricious man.

that in

men

therefore to be said that such

presents.

simoniacs

they cause the troubles

France

;

for if they did

not fear to lose their Church revenue, they would grant

236

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

easily

enough

all

by

easily judge,

other points of their

way

Holy Writ.

But

I

can

of acting, that they have

more love and greater reverence

own

for their

bellies,

than for the divine majesty of God, before which they will

have

to give

account at the day of his coming

;

and then they shall desire to die, and death will flee from them and they will say then to the mountains, Mountains, fall upon us, and hide us from the face of this great living God, as it is written in the Apoca;

lypse.

me

See, therefore, now, whether you have given

me

good counsel, or advised Item.

— Do

any peace in that they and

you think their

rather to

that

their accomplices,

that they fear

more

;

I

?

venture to say

whoever they may

they

who have

not had

at all events, they are not

wealth or honor; but

satisfied with either

be,

consciences, and

in their

to die than

the conscience cauterized

ruin.

these poor wretches have

own conscience

have always some remorse

my

if

any one

should cross them, they will break their hearts to be

revenged

whether

and so the poor wretches have no peace,

;

in their

minds or

in their bodies,

however

fat

a

kitchen they afford to keep.

For these causes, to fly the

I

have found nothing better than

neighborhood and the acquaintance of such

people, and to withdraw myself to labor on the earth,

which

is

to those

a thing just before God, and a great recreation

who

will

works of Nature.

contemplate admiringly the wondrous

But

1

have found

in the

world no

pleasure greater than to have a beautiful garden.

God having him

in a

So

created the earth for man's service, placed

garden which contained several kinds of

fruit

THE NATURALIST LOOKING OUT ON EVIL DAYS.

237



and

it

for this reason that,

was

of the 104th Psalm, as

I

told

contemplating the sense

you before,

was seized

I

formerly with so great an affection for the building of

my

garden, that since

said

nothing but

be about

it,

;

I

have

done

over again, within myself, the building

toil

of the same

time

that

and

as

it

often, in sleeping,

happened

to

me

have seemed

I

week,

last

to

when

that

was asleep upon my bed, my garden seemed to be already made, and in the same form that I have described to you, and I already began to eat its fruits, I

and recreate myself therein and it seemed to me that walking, in the morning, through the said garden, I ;

came

consider the

to

Sovereign has

among

commanded Nature

other things

vines, of peas,

I

weak

like threads into the

small branch or twig, selves,

never again

came

to

sustain the parts of their

And

perform

;

and

and gourds, which seemed as though

unable to sustain themselves,

arms

to

contemplated the branches of the

they had some sense of their

little

deeds which the

marvellous

nature; for being

they stretched certain

and finding some

air,

and attach them-

to unite

part thence,

weak

that they

might

nature.

sometimes, in passing through the garden,

I

saw a number of the said branches which had nothing whereby to support themselves, and threw their little arms into the air, thinking to grasp something, to sustain a part of their said body then I came to present to them certain boughs and branches, to aid their weak nature, and having done this in the morning, I found in the evening that the above-named things had cast and entwined many of their arms about the said ;

boughs

;

then, all astonished at the providence of

God,

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

238

came

I

to

an authority, which

contemplate

Saint

is

Matthew, where the Lord says that even the birds not

fall to

ground without His

the

passed on farther,

And

will.

having

perceived certain branches and

I

creepers of the hop-plant, which, though

has neither

it

nor hearing, nor perception, nevertheless has

sight,

God

received knowledge from nature, and the

way

such manner that said

shall

which

in

saw

I

I

many

together, and being

themselves along the length of certain order to

consolidate

and attach themselves

together,

when

in

itself, in

companionship of one another,

thus fortified by the

branches,

should sustain

its

that the said creepers of the

hop bound and entwined

they spread

it

of the weakness of

themselves again

to the said

branches

had seen and contemplated such a

thing,

:

I

could find nothing better than to employ oneself in the art of agriculture,

Him I

in

and

And

His marvels.

perceived certain

having passed

as

is

and among others

I

preserve their

child

:

fruits,

to

recognise

still

farther,

which seemed also as

fruit-trees,

they had some understanding to

God, and

to glorify

;

for

the

if

they were careful

woman

perceived

for her

the

little

vine, the

cucumbers, and melons, which had made for themselves certain leaves with which they covered their fruits, I

saw

fearing least they might be injured also the rose-trees

and

the

for the purpose of repelling those

them of

their fruits,

by the

heat.

gooseberries, which,

who would

deprive

had put on an armor of sharp perceived also the wheat

spines about the said

fruit.

and other

which the Sovereign had given

grain, to

I

wisdom for the clothing of their fruit so excellently, that Solomon with all his wisdom never wore so suitable a vesture.

THE NATURALIST LOOKING OUT ON EVIL DAYS. I

considered also that the Sovereign had taught the

chestnut to

arm and

clothe

many

other

kinds

me

to fall

casioned

Living,

and

my

Then,

things

oc-

and adore the Living

face,

things for man's use

gave

that

also,

which

;

who has made such

service.

almond, and

filbert, the

of fruit-trees

upon

industriously with a

its fruit

wondrous robe, likewise the

of

239

me

occasion to

consider our miserable ingratitude and perverse wickedness

and the more

;

I

entered into the contemplation of

more I was led by my affections to the of agriculture, and led to despise these grandeurs

these things, the art

and dishonest gains which, recompensed according

to

the

at

garden only, but of for

in the

there, that

meadow I

spirit,

contained

it

seemed

to

garden, and that

— not

I

those of the

aspects and surrounding places

seemed within me

it

walk

its

it

be

to

merits or demerits.

their

And being in such ravishment of me that I was really in the said tasted all the pleasures

have

last,

really as

if I left

lying to the south of

could see play,

frisk,

the garden to it,

and being

and bound, certain

lambs, rams, ewes, she-goats, and kids, kicking and skipping, with at the

many

same time

it

strange looks and gestures

seemed

to

me

that

great pleasure in the sight of certain old

;

and

was taking and decayed

I

ewes, which, feeling their time renewed, and having

making a thousand leaps meadow, which was a thing

put off their old robes, were

and gambols full

in the

said

of pleasure and refreshment.

seemed to me, also, that I beheld certain rams, which retreated far from one another, and then running It

with speed and a great their

horns together.

I

stiffness,

saw

they

also the

came

to strike

goats,

which,

240

WRITINGS OF PALISSY. on

rising

their

two hind

horns together with

saw the little colts and the little which played and pranced near their mothers.

great violence calves,

;

also,

I

me

All these things gave in

feet, struck

myself

that

men were

so great a pleasure, that

very foolish so

said

I

to despise rural

places and the art of agriculture, which our ancient

men

fathers,

of might and prophets, were content them-

selves to exercise,

seemed

It

to

and even

me,

watch the

to

also, that to

flocks.

recreate

myself,

walked along the avenues, and under the cover of foliage

I

their

heard for awhile murmuring the waters of a

I

brook which passed at the foot of the said avenues,

and on the other side

I

heard the voice of the young

which were upon the

birds

trees

and then there came

;

my memory that hundred and fourth Psalm on which my garden had been founded, where the prophet into

says

run

He

'

:

sendeth the springs into the valleys, which

among

the hills

:

'

also he says,

*

By them

the fowls of the heaven have their habitation,

among

sing

walking

which

the branches.'

seemed

It

shall

to

me,

in the said

also,

when

that

meadows,

I

I

was

tired

of

turned towards the side

of the west wind, where the woods and mountains are

and then

it

seemed

to

me,

that I perceived

which are deduced and narrated I

saw

in the said

the conies playing, jumping,

Psalm

:

;

for

and habita-

which the Sovereign Architect had erected

tions,

for

and when suddenly the animals perceived one

of their enemies, they place which I

things

and bounding along

the mountains near to certain pits, holes,

them

many

saw

knew

was ordained

also the fox,

who

to

well

how

to retire into the

be their dwelling.

crept along the thickets, his

241

THE NATURALIST LOOKING OUT ON EVIL DAYS. belly against the earth, to catch

some one of

those

creatures, to content the desire of his belly.

little

short,

seemed

it

to

me

that

In

had the pleasure of be-

I

holding goats, deers, hinds, and kid, along the said

mountains, in the same

way

or very near to the

sort,

which the Prophet David describes

to

us in this hun"

dred and fourth Psalm. Item. virgins



It

was

to

who kept

me

that

on

their flageolets

heard the voice of in like wise

;

many

seemed

it

to

heard certain shepherds playing melodiously

I

who from

and then

:

said within myself,

little

if I

their flocks

me

ers,

as

the

I

marvel

moment

seemed

it

at

me

to

a heap of foolish labor-

that they

have acquired a

wealth, which they will have gained with

labor in their youth, are afterwards

ashamed

their children in the state of laborers

so they will

them, on the

first

that I

;

much

to train

make

occasion, greater than themselves,

placing them in professions commonly, and what the

poor

man

will

have been earning with great pains and

labor, he will in great part

spend

gentleman, which gentleman, at

to

make

any one

shall

say he

is

son

to

a

blush to be

last, will

seen in his father's company, and be

his son

displeased if

And

a laborer.

if,

man has certain other children, it gentleman who will eat up the rest, and

by

chance, the good

will

be

will

this

have the best share, without regard

expense

to the

in-

currred for him at the schools, while his brothers were cultivating the

while, behold

earth with their father. the

reason

miscarries under evil fortune

is

vol. n.

the

management

such that every 16

why

man

;

And, mean-

earth

frequently

because the mis-

asks only to live upon

242

WRITINGS OF PALISSY. income, and

his

to the

— a deplorable

most ignorant

Would

that

of the earth

to leave the cultivation

were

it

thing.

so, I said then, that

men

could

for

labor

have as great zeal, and as much affection

upon the

have affection for the purchase

earth, as they

of offices, benefices, and grandeurs the earth be blessed, tors,

and then would

;

and the labor also of her

and then she would produce her

fruits

cultiva-

her

in

season.

Having contemplated towards the

under the

side

of the

fruit-trees,

these things,

all

I

with

many

fruits,

went

and

east wind,

walk

walking

in

for I

;

saw

the squirrels

and leaping from branch

pretty looks

to

received a great contentment

and many joyous pleasures gathering the

I

to

On

and gestures.

branch,

the other

saw nuts gathered by the rooks, who rejoiced taking their .repast, and dining on the said nuts.

hand, in

I

Again, under the apple-trees

I

found certain hedge-

hogs, which had rolled themselves into a round form,

and having

thrust their

said apples,

went so burdened.

I

saw

also the

self persecuted his

little

wisdom of

by

fleas,

mouth, and went

to

hairs or needles over the

the fox, who, finding him-

took a mouthful of moss into

a brook, and having turned his

back towards the said brook, he entered in order to cause all the fleas to escape

towards his head

;

and when they had

head, the fox immersed himself

they were

all

were upon

his snout,

from

by

little,

his

body

all fled into his

by degrees,

still

gathered on his snout

little

;

until

and when they

he slowly immersed

that,

until

they were collected on the moss which he had taken in his

mouth

;

and when they were upon the moss, he

left

THE NATURALIST LOOKING OUT ON EVIL DAYS.

came up

diving suddenly, and

it,

the stream

and so he

;

moss, which moss served

a place higher up

at

left the

upon the said

fleas

them as a boat

to

243

carry

to

them elsewhere. I

my

perceived, also, a stratagem which the fox used in

presence, the most acute and subtle that

heard related

he found himself destitute of food,

for

:

ever

I

was near dinner-time, and that he yet had nothing ready, he went to lie down in a field and close by, and adjoining one end of the wood

and seeing that

it

;

having lain down there, he stretched his limbs upwards, and shut his eyes, and

being thus stretched

upside down, pretending to be dead

happened

that

;

*

.

.

.

then

a crow, also in want of dinner, came

it

to

place herself upon his belly, thinking that the said fox

was dead for at

but the crow was well outwitted

:

the

first

blow of her beak

griped the crow, but

to

cry coua

who ;

.

.

the

.

;

fox

could find no help for herself,

and

that

in

way

the

subtle

fox

who would have have made me such a

obtained his dinner, at the cost of her

eaten him.

All these things

lover of the fields, that

no treasures to

in the

it

seems

to

me

that there are

world so precious, or which ought

be held in such great esteem, as the

little

branches

of trees and plants, although they are the most despised. I

hold them in more esteem than mines of gold and

silver.

And when

I

consider the value of the very

smallest branch of tree or thorn, * I spoil this

passage by omitting

in deference to

what we

our minds come

to

call,

I

am

its

filled

with wonder

most interesting part

in England, delicacy.

When

be less coarse, perhaps our delicacy will

not be so comprehensive as

it is

at present.

244

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

at the great

how

study only

to

who seem,

ignorance of men,

in our day,

and

break through, cut down,

to

destroy the beautiful forests which their predecessors

had been guarding as so precious.

wrong

them

in

to cut

the forests

they planted any portion of the not at

should not find

I

down,

soil

if

it

afterwards

but they think

;

of times to come, not considering the great

all

harm they

are doing to their children in the future.

Question.

— And why do you

forests should be cut

down

find

in this

it

wrong that There are

so

manner

?

many

bishops, cardinals, priories, and abbeys,

teries

and chapters, which,

have obtained

treble

in cutting

down,

forests

have

they

First,

profit.

monas-

had

money for the wood, and have given some of it to women, children, and men also. Item, they have leased the

of the said forests at a rental, out of

soil

which they have reaped much money also

And

fees.

in

entrance

afterwards the laborers have sown wheat

and seeds every year, of which wheat they have had

You

always a good portion.

see, therefore,

how much

more income lands yield than formerly they yielded. For which reason I cannot think that this ought to be found wrong.

Answer. can all

call

:

because when

levelled, there

sans I

all

;

would cease,

but

woods

when

could see no

I

if

all

shall

have been

the arts,

and

arti-

herb, like Nebuchadnezzar.

have sometimes attempted

wood

the

must be an end of

may go and browse on

arts that

I

cannot enough detest such a thing, and

I

not a fault, but a curse and a misfortune to

it

France



to

there

put

came

down to

in order the

be an end of

had written a great number of them,

way

to

an end of

my

writing

;

and

THE NATURALIST LOOKING OUT ON EVIL DAYS. having considered

found that there was not a

which could be exercised without wood

single one

navigation and

all

I

all,

and several kinds of

even the birds

themselves upon

nourished

;

must

fruits,

which

beasts,

migrate to

kingdom, and that neither oxen, cows, nor

another

any other bovine animals, would be of service country where there was no wood.

you a thousand reasons

give

when

which, about

necessary,

is

is

any

art

and

;

we had no wood,

if

a to

a philosophy

wood

they will judge, that without

it,

teeth to

had studied

I

but this

;

in

waiters shall have thought

outside

the

possible to exercise

there

that

must cease, and that

fisheries

all

245

is

it

im-

would even be

it

for the

office

of the

become vacant, and where there is no wood no need of wheat nor any other grain for

making bread. I

think

it

a very strange thing that

do not compel their subjects

to

many

sow some

seigneurs

part of their

land with acorns, and other parts with chestnuts, and other parts with filberts, which would be a public good,

and a revenue

that

would grow while they were sleep-

That would be very

ing.

they are constrained

and cows

to

warm

to

fit

in

many

parts

where

amass the excrement of oxen

themselves; and in other regions

they are obliged to

warm

pots with straw

not this a fault and public igno-

rance

?

*

of wood, #

A

If I I

:

would compel

was ordered (May to the

boil

their

were seigneur of such lands so barren

hundred and

each place

is

themselves and

fifty

3,

my

tenants to

odd years after

this

1720) that trees of

nature of the

soil,

sow

all

trees in at

was

written,

it

kinds, fitted in

should be planted through-

out France on the borders of the public roads.

246

WRITINGS OF PAL1SSY.

They are much a revenue which would come to them

least a part of them. is

and

could be I

had eaten the

after they

warmed by

had given

after his wife

within

birth to

some days

a daughter, philoso-

himself that wood ;

gave

a revenue

therefore, he

his servants to plant about his lands

would be worth twenty

daughter was of age

com-

a hundred

his

marry, and so the said trees

to

dowry he projected giving

was a prudence greatly

many

said

sols a-piece before

would be worth a hundred thousand the

;

branches and their trunks.

thousand feet with trees, saying thus, that the trees

it

of the trees, they

fruits

which grew while one was asleep

manded

:

while sleeping

greatly an Italian duke, who,

praise

phized

their

be pitied

to

to

livres,

which was

That

to his daughter.

be praised

;

I

would

who would act in many here who love

could be found in France

same manner.

that

the

the There are pleasure of the chase, and the frequenting of the woods but at the same time they take to themselves ;

what they

find, without

concerning themselves for the

future.

Many

devour their income as retainers of the court

in hectorings, superfluous expenses, as well in accou-

trements as in other things useful for

them

teach them

how

to eat

:

it

would be much more

onions with their tenants, and

to live well, set

adjust their disputes, hinder

them good example,

them from ruining them-

selves with lawsuits, plant, build, trench, feed, sustain,

and, at the requisite and necessary time, hold themselves

ready

to

do service

to

their

prince

for

the

defending of their country. I

wonder

at the

ignorance of men,

when

I

look at

THE NATURALIST LOOKING OUT ON EVIL DAYS.

implements, which ought to be in

their agricultural

more request than precious that,

seems

it

247

bits

of armor

certain striplings,

to

that

:

yeff or

if

all

they had

handled any implement of agriculture they would have

been dishonored poor he

may

debased

in his

be,

by

it

and a gentleman, however

;

and up

to his ears in debt,

own eyes

his

if

would be

hands had been

for

a

short time in contact with a plough. I

could wish that the king had founded certain offices,

estates,

and

honors for

all

those

who

should invent

some good and subtle agricultural tool. If it were so, everybody's mind would have been bent on achieving something. Ingenious men were never in demand at the siege of a town but there were found a few and precisely as you see men despise the ancient modes of ;

dress, they

would despise also the ancient implements

of agriculture, and in good sooth they would invent better ones.

Armorers often change the fashion of swords, and other harness culture

one first

so great that

is

method

;

and

but the ignorance in agri-

;

abides ever accustomed to

it

if the

tools

invention, they preserve

siness;

in

one

province,

without any change

in

;

the halberds,

were clumsy

them ever one

at their

in their

accustomed

clum-

fashion

another province, another also

without ever changing. It is

not long since

and of Bigorre

;

I

was

in the province of

Beam

but in passing through the fields,

I

could not look at the laborers without chafing within myself, seeing the

and why

is

studies as

much

it

that

clumsiness

we

find

of their implements;

no well-born youth, who

to invent tools useful to his laborers,

248

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

as he takes pains over the cutting of his coat into surprising patterns

I

?

cannot contain myself

to talk

of

these things, considering the folly and the ignorance of

men.

— What

Question.

tools

would

it

now

such a garden as you have just

me

require

to build

described

to

?

Answer.

— There

would be need of

servants to agriculture

tools,

;

all

kinds of

and, because there are

columns and other pieces of architecture, there would be need of

kinds of tools proper to geometry.

all

— beg you as they succeed each Answer. — We have Question.

I

to

name

these to

me

in order,

other.

square,

plummet, the

the

Those are

astrolabe.

compass, the rule, the

the

the

level,

bevel,

and the geometry

the tools necessary to

and architecture. Since it

we

occurred

me

to

hour of midnight, lion,

this debate, the

me

also,

;

my

for

it is

honor

geometrical tools in rebel-

:

The Rule

know what you but a circle direct it

;

walk



which of

and being

first;

in

'

:

to reprove a

expenditure, he

within compass. first.'

to

to

Compass said That honor belongs I who manage and measure everything

when one wishes

fluous

way

to see

to the

say, that

week, being asleep about the

last

one against another, and questioning

them belonged to

me

are talking of geometry, let

So

to

is

me

admonished

for his superto

live

more

belongs the honor of going

said to the talk

man

'You do not You can make nothing

Compass:

about.

but as for me,

I

guide

all

things in a

way, and forwards or sideways, or whatever be,

I

cause everything

to

walk

straight before

249

THE NATURALIST LOOKING OUT ON EVIL DAYS.

me

when

also,

;

that his life

it is I

he cannot

office

Then

me no

the

It

to

is

Plummet

me

masonry

all

me

honor

that this

building would

saying

itself up,

lifted all

for

;

is

it

hold :

who

I

heavenwards, and

directly

wall would be straight, for which cause

of a Rule

suddenly

fall

you have

therefore

;

also,

;

do the

often

I

conclude, that

to

the place of honor belongs.'

This

done,

Level rose and said

the

scoundrels and rascals

Do

honor belongs.

manage

me

Do

?

my

have made use of

and

the Level

Bevel,

in

me

know

that all the raf-

that

services in

put to their

know

many

I

please

making

their mines,

they could not gain their ends

to rest

off

and conclude

with me.' his

And

that

Do men

?

ingenious

pointing their wild cannons

had finished

who

know

not people very well

why you must break

honor ought

that the place of

places and pavements as

all

that without

me

to

not people

not people very well

trenches,

is

it

!

Oh, the

'

:

cross-beams, could not be

girders,

duty without

'

'

:

without which, no

buildings would

is

as to say,

Therefore, to

live rightly.

ought to be honored above you

ters,

much

:

corner,

without

I

as

manner, they say

for

;

lead and guide

to

is

which

;

Square said

the

together.' I

ill

when need is, two Rules exist in me also, who manage the angles and the chief stones of

belongs

1

an

belongs the honor of walking foremost.'

Then

the

lives in

irregular

is

that without rule

me

man

a

And

? ?

That due

that the

immediately after

discourse,

there

was

the

up with great quickness, saying Make way, make way you do not know what you leapt

:

;

are saying I

:

the place of honor appertains to

do deeds that none of you can do

;

and

I

me

;

for

ask you,

250

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

could you erect a building on a sloping place it is

known

well

and you are of no

:

and can do nothing but the commonest

use,

but for me,

business

:

thing,

make a

that

you cannot

that

I

go,

I

I

none of you can do.

come,



great thing,

And

?

in

sort

make a

I

short,

Therefore,

I

little

do things easy

is

it

of

to

decide that the place of honor belongs to me.'

Then

the Astrolabe arose, with a canonical firmness

Would you rob me of For it is I who mount up

and gravity, and spoke thus the honor that

due

is

higher than you

?

:

*

you may

great as

all,

be,

and

my

kingdom and empire stretches to the clouds. Is it not I who measure the stars, and through me that the times and seasons are made known to men, fertility or sterility

And what have you

?

any one deny

when self,

to

say

the truth of that which

to this

affirm

I

heard the noise of their disputes,

I

and straightway came

then the

quarrel

:

it

moment they had seen me, they

me

elected

their judge, to

whereupon

I

And

'

aroused my-

I

see what

to

?

Can

?

might be

;

straightway

judge upon their cause of

said to them,

Do

not deceive

you no honor, neither any pre-eminence honor belongs to man, by whom you have been formed and for that reason you must serve

yourselves, there belongs to :

;

and honor him.

What/ they serve man, who 1

said, is

'

man

to

!

and must we obey and

so wicked and full of folly

:

'

then

was not so. They all cried out, saying Give us leave to measure the head of man, and do you make use of us in this I

endeavored

to

excuse man, saying that

it

:

affair,

line in

and you

will

know

that

man

him, nor certain measure

in

has not a straight

any

part of him,

THE NATURALIST LOOKING OUT ON EVIL DAYS.

251

whatever Vitruvius and Sebastian, and other architects,

may

have said and demonstrated by

Seeing which,

man,

the head of a

and the but,

know

to

however

head caused

might be,

it

I

could never find a certain

which were

follies

change

to

it

its

when

I

my

applied

a moment,

measures. I

found the said head,

;

and although

at

tools to figure

it

pre-

right lines,

them, suddenly,

found that the right lines had

I

become oblique;

in the said

some appearance of

sented, occasionally,

in

measure

exactly what his measures

Then I was confused, because now of one sort, now of another

and

desire to

it

measure, because the

yet

figures.

seemed to me that the Bevel, the Rule, Compass, were very proper for this business,

were, and %

was seized with a

I

their

which

was much

I

astonished,

seeing that there was not any right line in a man's head,

because

deviate and to

become

what manner of to

be

so

caused every right

folly

his

follies

in

deformed and disproportioned

unable

to

know

mined

to

examine

it

which was the way

in

or learn this

which

putrefy, others to calcine

by geometry,

:

I

extracted

its

I

being deter-

I

came suddenly this

some

to

to erect

some

to

examine, others

to

business

sublime in* some again for the purpose of done,

but

;

by an alchemical philosophy,

sundry furnaces, proper for

Which

to

Then I wished to know man, which made him

oblique.

were

line

;

distilling.

took the head of a man, and having

essence by calcinations and

sublimations, and other examinations

distillations,

made by means

of retorts, flasks, and sand-baths, and having separated all terrestrial parts

that there

were

from the exhalative matter,

truly in

man an

infinite

I

found

number of

252

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

when

which,

follies,

had perceived,

I

back, as

I fell

it

were, fainting, in consequence of the great exhalation of

Then I was taken with to know what was the

of the said head.

follies out

a sudden curiosity and longing cause of

my

affair, I

almost

great follies, and having closely

its

all

found that avarice and ambition had turned

men

the brain

all

foolish,

when

:

I

and had,

after a

had ascertained

manner, rotted

this, I

desirous to investigate the roguish tricks of I

had been before, which was the reason

the

examined

was more

men why I

head of a Limosin, and having subjected

examination,

found that he had his head

I

full

of

than took it

follies,

and was a great mixer and augmenter of drugs; that

it

was detected

that he

had bought good pepper

Rochelle at thirty-five sols the pound, and sold

wards

seventeen

at

in

after-

making a adulteration added

pepper.

to the said I

it

so

of Niord,

sols, in the fair

great profit in consequence of the

Then

to

asked

judgment, as but without

to

why he was

so foolish,

and without

deceive thus wickedly the customers

any shame

;

maintained that the

this rascal

was a piece of wisdom and I urged upon him then that he was damning himself, and that he could afford better to be poor than

folly of

which he was

damned

;

guilty

:

men were

but this insensate said that poor

of no esteem, and that he would not be poor, follow

what might

:

then

I

was constrained

to

leave

him

in

his folly.

Afterwards

I

grasped the head of a young man,

without having regard to what might be his condition

and having put

his

head under examination,

the chief part of this

was only

folly

;

I

;

found that

and having contem-

THE NATURALIST LOOKING OUT ON EVIL DAYS. plated for a

little

while this personage,

wearing

in

way

to cut in this

entered into a

Brother,

who has

the good cloth

you are

dispute with him, inquiring of him,

moved you

I

'

your breeches and other habiliments

you not know very well

that

it

make me

insensate wished to

253

a folly

is

?

Do

?

But

'

this

believe that breeches so

cut would last longer than others, a thing

I

could not

believe.

Then

said to him,

I

and do not doubt

this,

'

My

friend, assure yourself of

that the

it,

was a

holes cut in his breeches

though, in general matters, you

son

in the world,

may True

fool.

transmitted from our ancestors

my

but for

part, I

a direct piece of After

by nature

and

;

be the wisest per-

is

is,

it

that a folly

esteemed wisdom

cannot agree that such a thing

is

;

not

folly.'

me

seized

this I

fool

man who had

yet in this particular you imitate and

example of a

follow the

first

head of a

the

dirty wife of

a

of the long robe, and

say,

king's officer, that

is

having exposed

examination, and having separated

the

to

to

from the earth,

spirit

closely

it

to

packed with

found the above

I

follies in

do the duty of a Christian,

why

lady,

that

I

;

then, thinking

said to her,

you are so perverse

in

'

My

your

dear

habili-

Do you not know very well that clothes are made in summer to cover the flesh, and in winter

ments only

is it

her head

named

?

same reason, and for And you know that the closer

for the

are, the

more they to yourself

your dress

in

to the skin

retain heat,

serve the ends of modesty

have got

protection against cold

;

but,

?

your garments

and the better they on the contrary, you

a farthingale, in order

to dilate

such a manner, that your garments barely

254

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

escape exposing what you ought

made her

this

had

me Huguenot

called

;

* seeing which,

her and took up her husband's head, and having

I left

examined

as usual,

it

knaveries

;

then

found in

I

said to him,

I

great follies and

it

Why

is

it

that

so foolish, to trick and pillage people on

He

I

remonstrance, instead of thanking me,

woman

the silly

After

to hide.'

me

told

and

estate,

that

that

was

it

he could have no peace with

new

was forced

to rob in

condition.

'

O

It

?

married

to

his

his wife if

equipments, and that he

fool,' I said then,

'

your wife

is

a shepherd-girl

;

to bring

did the wife of our

would have been better

you when you

?

order to maintain his estate and

you an apple of death, as father

sides

all

maintenance of

for the

he did not often give her

you are

if

your wife

first

you had been

will not

excuse

be obliged to stand before the

shall

judgment-seat of God.' After that

I

took the head of a canon, and having

made examination of was more

there

asked him then,

enemy Writ

?

those

to '

parts as above, I found that

its

folly in '

Why

than in

it

is

that

it

who speak

But he replying

he should be forced

to

preach

to live at ease,

that

* The origin of the word

Some

call

it

associates).

i

a corruption of the

This notion

is

that).

were not

;

'

German

first

that

is

he

but since he had

was accustomed from caused him to support

rivation of Haberdasher from the

you

it

in all his benefices,

Huguenot

I

Holy

of the authority of

said, that if

not learned to preach, and

the others.

you are so great an

would take part with the Protestants youth

all

his

the

a vexed question.

Eid-genossen (sworn

cousin to Minshew's

German Halt

ihr das

de-

(have

THE NATURALIST LOOKING OUT ON EVIL DAYS.

And

Church of Rome.

said then,

I

'

You

255

are very-

wicked, and you play the hypocrite before your brothers

who

the other canons,

think that

you both maintain and

believe honestly the statutes of the 1

No,

he said,

no,'

who would

'

there

no

Lent

man

of them

and

;

companions

they had no fear of

were not

it

who would

mass

to

for that, there

not eat meat with

me

in

for the edification of the kitchen, there

not a doubt of that.

good

if

if

my

Church.'

and whatever appearance they assume, they

;

only go is

not one of

not confess the truth,

losing their revenues is

is

Roman

folks

If

had not been

it

would compel us

that the

go and preach, we

to

could have endured the ministers quietly enough

we do

for our income's sake,

but

;

our best towards their

banishment.'

Then to

I

thought that

it

would be

folly in

me

to

attempt

admonish him, considering the answer he had made.

Then,

know whether

to

his

speech had truth in

I

it,

grasped the head of a president of the chapter; but that

was

terrible, for

it

would not endure the

made

permit that any examination should be affairs

:

nor

test,

of

its

he kicked, he beat, he pranced, he plunged

into a black, vindictive

Seeing which,

choler.

came vexed at him; and, whether he liked it or placed him under examination, and proceeded to rate his parts



that

is

the

to say,

I

be-

no, I

sepa-

pernicious

black,

choler on one hand, ambition and vain-glory on the other.

I

put aside,

elsewhere, the

intestine

which he used against them that he hated thus separated

all

his parts, as a

rates the matter of his metals,

you not cease from your

;

murder

in short,

I

good alchemist sepa-

and asked him

follies

?

Is

it

:

'

Will

not time to

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

256 be converted

no

man

said,

What,' he said,

'

'

wiser than

in this parish

to

'

?

new

the

am.

I

when

religion,

follies

'

stand truth as well as any other; but

walk

in the

those

I

way

my own

'

but that

life

'

?

said he.

'

'

It

true

is



I

that

I



Cer-

for

;

that the priests ought not to live lewdly.'

lewd

'

we

What,

have a wife and

many children, but she is not lewd she we two were married secretly.' And I '

hate.'

I

not a Christian

is

wise

time, and do service to

and vengeance on those

love,

tainly,' I said,

know

of

and under-

am

I

is

belong/ he

I

please,

I

There

?

my

is

wife



him

said to

:

Wherefore, then, do you persecute and seek the death ?

of Christians

saved

many

hated,

'

'

What, death

of them.

It

he

'

true,

is

have not forborne

I

?

said.

whom

I

Whatever

I

that those

follow.'

to

could say or do, by no means could

I

have

I

'

make

this presi-

dent agree that he was not a good and a wise man,

however many were the marvellous which

I

After

evils in his parts

had put under examination. this I

took the head of a presiding judge,

called himself good

servant to the king



the

who

same

had greatly persecuted certain Christians, and had favored

head

to

many wicked men;

and, having subjected his

examination, and separated

that there

was one

part fattened

its

parts,

I

found

by a morsel of bene-

knew directly that this was the reason why he had made war against the Gospel, or against those who desired to lay it open to fice

which he possessed

the light.

;

Seeing which,

ing well that

I

then

I

him

knowshould have had no power of argument I left

to his folly,

over him, since his kitchen was fattened with that kind of pottage.

THE NATURALIST LOOKING OUT ON EVIL DAYS. 257

Then

came

I

examine the head and the whole

to



the slyest fellow body of a counsellor of parliament and having put his parts one might ever meet with



and furnace of examination,

into the retort

he had

many bits of benefices, which had much that he could not confine his

him

so

When

belly in his breeches.

1

found that

in his belly

fattened

thing,

I

I

had perceived such a

I

entered into dispute with him, saying to him

Come, now, are you not

foolish

Is

?

it

not thus that

you

the profits of your benefices have caused

proceedings against Christians

you are a

man

foolish

who gave up

more

say,

I

;

Confess by

?

to take this that

foolish than

Esau,

a mess of herbs

his birthright for

:

he

gave no more than a temporal good, but you give an eternal kingdom, ties

and take upon yourself eternal penal-

pleasure and delectation of your belly.

for the

Confess, therefore, that your folly son,

Esau deplored

greater than that of Esau.

he was not heard.

error, yet

you confess your

pardoned

but

;

have

I

do not

I

that, that if

beyond compari*

is,

iniquity

great

fear

mean you

that

say by

to

will not

you

his

will

be

do

nothing while you war directly against the truth of

God, of which you are not ignorant/ I

had no sooner finished

foolish to I

my

and insensate man used

discourse, than this

all his efforts to

put

shame, and gain a victory upon the proposition had maintained

'What,

is

that

;

and said

your argument?

fool for holding benefices, the

be terribly

great.'

that all those

me

to

who

Then

I

me that

with a loud voice

If I

:

were, indeed, a

number of

fools

would

said to him, quite gently,

drink the milk and wear the wool of

the sheep, without providing for their pasture, are acVOL.

II.

17

258

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

cursed

;

and alleged

him

to

the passage that

Then he

Jeremiah the Prophet, chapter 34.

in

written

is

at-

tempted a bravado, and a marvellously high-flown fury,

What ? According a great many whom God

saying,

are

your account, there

to

'

has cursed

and

that in our sovereign court,

in

For

?

I

know

the courts of

all

who

France, there are few counsellors and presidents

do not possess -some morsel of benefice, which helps to support the

and

and accoutrements, banquets,

gildings

common

— necessary

pleasures of the house,

some noble place, honor and authority. Do you call the most consummate wisdom/ said acquire in time

folly to let oneself

or office, of that

he.

know who take I

many

fat

;

is

a great

Ite?n,' said

;

he

:

nevertheless, they

for such things help

;

maintenance of

kitchens

It

?

great lords in France,

the revenue of benefices

are not fools, but very wise

and

more

be hung, or burnt, for the mainte-

that there are

greatly in the

It is

'

nance of the authorities of the Bible. *

folly

to

their

them

honors,

estates,

and, by such means, they get good

horses for their service during war.'

When

I

had heard the discourse of

simoniac, inveterate in his roguery,

founded, and cried out in

on high and saying is

yours

You

?

gained friends

:

O

my

I

miserable

this

was

spirit, lifting

quite con-

up

my

poor Christians, and what place

thought to abase idolatry, and

to

your cause

were not on the road

eyes

to that

;

;

I

know now

for if I

may

to

that

have

you

believe this

you have all the courts of parliament against you and if it be as he has told me, you have

counsellor,

;

also

many

great lords

of benefices

;

who

take profit of the revenue

and while they are

intoxicate with such

HISTORY OF THE TROUBLES IN XAINTONGE.

you must

a potion,

know

fain

that they will

your capital and mortal enemies.

259

always be

Therefore,

I

am

of

opinion that you should return to your old simplicity,

assuring yourselves that you will have enemies, and

be persecuted

all

the time of your

if

life,

by

direct

God

paths you will follow and sustain the cause of

for such are the promises written originally in the

and

New

shelter of

Take

Testament.

Old

refuge, then, under the

your protecting chief and captain, our Lord

who

Jesus Christ,

and place

in time

wrong

properly to avenge the

that

know how

will

he has suffered, and

your sorrows.

HISTORY OF THE TROUBLES IN XAINTONGE. After

had perceived the

I

men, and considered which have France,

I

follies

the horrible emotions

and wars

year pervaded the whole kingdom of

this

thought within myself to

some town

and rogueries of

make

the design of

or city of refuge, in which to retire in time

many

of wars and troubles, and evade the malice of horrible

and insensate plunderers,

now seen

whom

I

in the execution of their furious

have before rage against

a great multitude of families, without having regard to

and even without any commission

just or unjust cause,

or

commandment. Question. It seems



that

you do not

pleased

God

to

to

me, when

feel assured of the

I

hear you

peace which

send us, and that you have

still

talk,

it

has

some

fear of a popular outbreak.

Answer.



I

pray

give us His peace

excesses of

men

;

God but

that I

if

that

it

will please

you had seen

Him

to

the horrible

have seen during these troubles,

260

WRITINGS OP PALISSY.

you have not a hair

in

your head that would not have

trembled, at the fear of falling to the mercy of man's

And he who has think how great and

malice.

not seen these things, could

never

horrible a persecution

is.

do not wonder that the Prophet David preferred

I

rather to choose pestilence than famine and war, saying

was

that if he suffered plague, he

war he was

but that in

cause

God extended

mercy of God,

at the

mercy of men

at the

;

which

for

and not

his rod over his people,

over him, because he had submitted himself to divine

mercy, and made plain confession of

can assure you

that reason, I

that

it is

a thing horribly

under the mercy of

to fear, the falling

For

his fault.

men who

are

wicked and pernicious.



Question.

I

pray you

to tell

me how

division in this district of Xaintonge

me

that

would be well

it

order that

to

set

who shall come You know that

the use of those

historians

for

down



who

seems

to

in writing, in

after us.

there

employ themselves upon

will

should think

it

many

be

will

events, the better to describe

ter; at all

it

might remain as a perpetual memorial for

it

Answer.

it



arose this

this

the

mat-

truth, I

well that in each town there should be

persons deputed to write faithfully the deeds that have

been done

during these

troubles

;

and from

such

materials the truth might be reduced into a volume

and

for this

narrative,

cause

not

I

of the

am

about to give you a short

whole,

but

of a

part

commencement of the Reformed Church. You must understand, that just as the Church was with

many

built

perils,

;

of the

Primitive

upon a very small beginning, and dangers and great tribulations,

so, in

HISTORY OF THE TROUBLES IN XAINTONGE.

261

these last days, the difficulty and dangers, pains, labor,

and

Xaintonge. the

been great

have

afflictions,

in

say of Xaintonge, because

I

inhabitants

region

this I

of

will leave

of any other diocese to write of

it

themselves, that which they truly know. It

happened,

year 1546, that certain monks

in the

having spent some days in parts of Germany,

may

or,

it

having read some books of their doctrine,

be,

and finding themselves deceived, they had the boldness secretly

enough

as the priests

to disclose certain

abuses

;

but as soon

and holders of benefices understood

that

these people depreciated their trade, they incited the

judges

to

descend upon them

an exceedingly good

:

this the

judges did with

because several of them

will,

possessed some morsel of benefice which helped to

By

boil the pot.

were constrained

means, some of the said monks

this

to take

exile

to

flight,

and unfrock

themselves, fearing least they might die in too hot a bed.

Some

took to a trade, others kept village schools;

and because the of Allevert, certain islands,

are

number

of Olleron, of Marepnes, and

remote

from

the

public

roads,

a

monks withdrew into those having found sundry means of living without of the said

And

being known. ventured they

isles

to

they

people,

they

speak only with hidden meaning,

until

as

were well assured

And

that

visited

they

were not

to

be

means they had reformed some number of persons, they found means to obtain the pulpit, because in those days there was a grand vicar who tacitly favored them thence it folbetrayed.

after that

by

this

:

lowed

that

by

little

and

islands of Xaintonge,

little,

in

many had

these districts and their

eyes opened,

282

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

and knew many errors of which they had before been ignorant

for

;

which cause many held

inasmuch as but

tion the said preachers,

would view

their errors poorly

There was

in those

fiscal attorney,

found means

was

a

in great estima-

them they

enough.

man named

days a

man

for

Collardeau,

perverse and of evil

life,

Bishop of Xaintes,

to give notice to the

who who

time at court, giving him to understand that

at the

was full of Lutherans and that he gave him charge and commission to extirpate them, and not only wrote to him many times, but also transported himself the place

to

He

succeeded so well by these

that he obtained

a commission from the bishop

the

means

;

said

spot.

and from the parliament of Bourdeaux, with a good

sum

of deniers that were taxed to him by the said

This he contrived for gain, and not through

court.

zeal on behalf of religion.

This done, he tampered

with certain judges, as well in the island of Olleron as of Allevert, and likewise

at

Gimosac

;

and having

corrupted these judges, he caused the arrest of the Denis, which

end of the island

preacher of

St.

of Olleron,

named Brother Robin, and by

means caused him

to

is

at the

be passed into the

the

same

island

of

Allevert,

where he arrested another preacher named

Nicole

and some days afterwards he took

:

also the

who kept a school and preached on Sundays, being much beloved of the inhabitants.

brother at Gimosac,

And *

although

Book of

I

believe the story to be written in the

Martyrs,' yet, nevertheless, because

the truth of certain facts,

I

have found

it

I

know

well to write

them, namely, that they well disputed and maintained their religion in the presence of

one Navieres, theolo-

263

HISTORY OF THE TROUBLES IN XAINTONGE. gian,

canon of Xaintes, who had himself formerly

begun

to

however much, because he had

detect errors,

been conquered by

he maintained the con-

his belly,

knew

trary, as the poor captives well

to

reproach him

However that might be, these poor folk were condemned to be degraded and caparisoned in to his face.

green, in order that the people

madmen

or

fools

maintained bridled

and what

;

is

might esteem them more, because they

God, they were

manfully the cause of

like

by the

horses

Collardeau,

said

being led upon the scaffold, which bridles had

an apple of iron which

— a very hideous

mouth

filled

all

the

thing to see

;

before

each

to

inside

of the

and being thus

degraded, they restored them into prison to conduct

them

to

Bourdeaux,

demned

in order that they

might be con-

But between the two condemnations

to death.

there occurred an admirable accident, namely, that he to

whom most

evil

was

desired,

and

whom

it

was

to put to

death with the most cruelty, was the

man who escaped

them, and quitted the prisons by an

designed

admirable means

;

for, to

have care of him, they had

stationed a certain person

near the prisons, also,

on the steps of an entry

to listen for

any sign of outbreak

they had procured great village dogs, which a

grand vicar had brought, which were set at large the bishop's court, in order that they might bark

prisoner attempted to things,

upon to his

come

Brother Robin

his legs,

filed

and having

companions, and

out.

filed

this

if

in

any

In spite of all these

the irons

which he had

them, he gave the

files

done, he pierced the walls,

which were of good masonry. But there occurred a strange accident, which was, that by chance a num-

264

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

ber of hogsheads were piled one upon another before said wall,

the

which hogsheads being pushed down,

created a great noise

and having

And

for

spired

which cause the porter

listened a long while, returned to

so the said Brother

the

at

;

Robin went out

rose,

sleep.

into the court,

mercy of the dogs. However, God had inhim to take some bread, and when he was in

the court he threw

it

to the said dogs,

as the lions of Daniel. the said

Now,

Robin had never been

it

who were

must be noted,

in this

but

;

God

that

town of Xaintes, he was

for this cause being in the bishop's court,

shut up

quiet

still

willed that he should find an open

door which led into the garden, which he entered, and finding himself again shut up between certain some-

what high

walls, he perceived

by the

light

of the

moon

a certain pear-tree which was close enough to the said wall,

and having mounted the said pear-tree, he per-

ceived on the other side of the said wall a chimney, to

Seeing which, he

which he could leap easily enough.

went back his

to the prisons, to

companions had

filed

know whether any one

his

irons

;

of

but seeing that

they had not, he consoled and exhorted them to battle manfully, and to take patiently their death

;

and em-

bracing them, took leave of them, and went again to

mount upon the pear-tree, and thence leaped upon the chimneys of the street. But this was a very marvellous thing proceeding from the divine Providence,

how

the said Robin could escape the second danger; for,

because he never had been in the town, he to

whom

he should

sick with a pleurisy

been provided

for

retire.

when

knew

not

But because he had been in the prisons,

and there had

him a physician and apothecary,

the

HISTORY OF THE TROUBLES IN XAINTONGE. said

Robin ran through the

said

physician and apothecary, of

membered knock

the names.

at several doors

and among others

employed

fifty

morning to

Robin should be taken.

re-

he went

this

to his greatest

to

enemies,

who

news of

to get

on the part of the

dollars

grand vicar, named Selliere, the said

he had

the door of a counsellor,

at

him, and promised

whom

But in doing

diligence next

all

inquiring for the

streets

belonging

265

him by whose means

He

then, knocking at

doors in the hour of midnight, had

excellently pro-

vided for his occasion, for he had

fastened up

his

dress over his shoulders, and had fastened his fetters to

one of his legs, and by such means those

to the

windows thought

that

it

who came

He

was a footman.

managed so well that he found refuge in a house, and was from thence in the same hour conducted out of the town, which occurred in the month of August in the said year

one

in the

but those two companions were burnt,

;

town of Xaintes, and the other

because the parliament of Bourdeaux had

by reason of

the plague,

of Bourdeaux

and

his

;

which was then

at

Libourne,

fled

thither

town

in the

and the above named martyrs, Nicole

companions, died

in the

month of August,

in

the year 1546, enduring death with a great constancy.

The

bishop,

or his

counsellors, resolved

those

in

times on a trick and stratagem extremely subtle

;

for

having obtained some order from the king for the cutting

down of a

around

this

great

they

forests

town, nevertheless, because

their recreation in the forest,

number of

which were

many

woods and pastures of

would not permit

levelled; but those following the

that

found

the said

they should be

Mahometan

artifices

266

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

resolved to gain the heart of the people by preachings

and presents made

king's party, and sent into

to the

town of Xaintes, and other towns of the diocese,

this

certain

monks

of the Sorbonne,

who foamed,

slavered,

making strange gesture discourses were nothing

twisted and twirled themselves,

and grimaces, and

all

their

but outcry against these

new

Christians

and some-

;

w as

times they exalted their bishop, saying that he

T

descended from the precious blood of Monseigneur Louis

;

*

and

in

way

this

the poor people

be cut down

allow their woods to

;

St.

patiently

and the woods

having been thus cut, there were no more preachers.

Thus you see how the practised upon as w ell as r

By state

this

you may

possessions

of people

were

their souls.

easily judge

what could be the

of the Reformed Church, which had not yet any

a Church, otherwise than that there

appearance of

were some who

tacitly

the Papacy.

was some time afterwards,

1557,

It

and timidly complained against

when one named Master

had been formerly a prisoner

Philibert

in the

year

Hamelin, who

in this town,

and taken

Bishop of Xaintes, in 1544, was Charles Cardinal of Bour-

*

bon

-,

Archbishop of Rouen, Legate of Avignon, afterwards

Bishop of Beauvais, Peer of France, Commander of the Order of the Holy Spirit. As Palissy would say, to boil his pot he

had some benefices. He was Abbot of St. Denis, Abbot of St. Germain des Prez, Abbot of St. Ouen, Abbot of Jumieges, Abbot of Corbie, Abbot of Vendome, Abbot of la Couture, Abbot of Signy, Abbot of Orcamp, Abbot of Montebourg, Abbot of Valemont, Abbot of Perseigne, Abbot of St. Germer, Abbot of Chateliers, Abbot of Froidmont, Abbot of St. Abbot of St. Lucien, in Beauvais; Abbot Etienne, in Dijon ;

of

St.

Michael, in

Lerm

;

&c. &c.

HISTORY OF THE TROUBLES IN XAINTONGE.

by

the

same Collardeau, transported himself again

Geneva

some time

for

imprisonment, and

since his

having enlarged at the said Geneva both his

had always a remorse

doctrine, he

into

and, because he had dwelt at

town of Xaintes;

this

267

faith

and

of conscience,

because he had dissembled in his public confession in this

town

and wishing

;

men

himself, wherever he went, to incite isters,

and

to

erect

travelled through the

servants

who

his press.

through

have min-

and other books printed

For he had given

this

to

some kind of church, and so lands of France, having some

sold Bibles,

In doing

himself a printer.

he exerted

to repair his fault,

his

mind

this,

to

it,

in

and made

he passed sometimes

Now,

town, and went also to Allevert.

he was so just and of so great a zeal, that although he

was a man

ill

of walking, he would never

capable

many urged him

accept horses, although

And

full affection.

being slenderly provided as to the

wherewith, he took with him no other

manner, without any

Now, it occurred one some prayers and little having his

at

way

little

flock of the

to pray,

and

way

alone, in

fear.

day, after he had concluded exhortations

most seven or eight auditors

to Allevert,

than only a

outfit

simple staff in his hand, and went his this

so to do with

in

town

this

— he went



upon

and, before parting, he prayed the

assembly

to exhort

to

congregate themselves,

one another

;

and so he went

Allevert, laboring to win the people to

God

;

to

and there,

being received kindly by the chief part of the people, brought them by the sound of a bell

and baptized a

child.

to certain

sermons,

Seeing which, the magistrates

of this town constrained the bishop to produce

money

268

WRITINGS OF PALISSY. maintenance of a pursuit of the said Philibert

for the

with horses, gens-d'armes, cooks, and

The

sutlers.

bishop, and certain magistrates of this town, transferred

themselves

who had been

the child to be re-baptized the said Philibert

and not being able

;

there, they followed

him

on

brought him into

this

town, as

prisons, although

criminals'

baptized by

to

his track, until they

mansion of a gentleman

the

in

where they caused

to the island of Allevert,

catch him

had found

and so they

;

a malefactor

works give

his

to

the

certain

witness that he was a child of God, and truly of His

He was

chosen.

so perfect in his works that his ene-

mies were compelled

am

I

assured, and

should have dared to

Xaintes,

I

can say w ith r

when he was brought

time

the

men

of wonder that

that they

well and had heard his blameless conversation

am

I

his doctrine.

judgment of death over him, seeing

in

knew for

full

he was of a holy

that

always without approval of

life,

sit

own

to

I

truth, that after

prison

the

into

of

mustered hardihood (although the days were

and remonstrate with

perilous in those times) to go

six

of the principal judges and magistrates of this town of

they had imprisoned a prophet or an

Xaintes, that

angel of

God

of condemnation to

them bert

me

as

him.

men

if It

to

I

men were

each of them

w ith 7

in his

tolerable

own

kindness

house. the

that

it

judges used

me

Phili-

seemed when compared

life,

devils

certain that the

towards myself, and heard

assuring

;

had known the said

be of so holy a

the other is

the last days

in

that for eleven years

Hamelin

word and judgment

sent to announce his

kindly

:

also

to

to

humanity I

spoke to

Finally, they treated said

Master Philibert,

HISTORY OF THE TROUBLES IN XAINTONGE.

269

although they could not acquit themselves of being guilty of his death.

True

it

is

that they did not kill

him, as Pilate and Judas did not

kill

Lord

the

they delivered him into the hands of those by

knew well that he would be slain. better to come by a wash for their hands

but

;

whom

And

they

that

the

would

acquit their hearts, they reasoned that he had been priest in the to

Roman Church

;

him

therefore they sent

Bourdeaux, with good and sure guard, by a provost-

marshal.

Would you know how holy was Philibert

apartment of the gaol-keeper, and

many

to repress the

of the said

and drink

at

But

in this town.

days, he had labored and taken pains

gamblings and the blasphemies which

were committed

was

to eat

which he did while he was

;

after, for

life

Liberty was given to him to live in the

?

his table

the

chamber of

in the

the gaol-keeper,

it

so displeasing, seeing that they would not check

themselves, that to prevent himself from listening to

such to

as soon as he had dined he caused himself

evil,

be led into a criminal

whole day long Item.

cell,

in solitude, to avoid the evil

— Would you know

uprightly

?

and remained there the

To

still

better

him, being in prison,

company.

how he walked there came an

advocate of France, belonging to some region in which

he had founded a three

hundred

little

livres,

church, which advocate brought

which he offered

to

the

gaol-

keeper, provided he would, at night, put the said Phili-

Seeing which, the gaol-keeper

bert outside the prisons.

was almost to take

incited to do

it

he requested, however,

;

counsel with the said

answering,

told

him

:

*

that

it

Master

was

Philibert,

better worth

who his

270

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

while to die at the hands of the executioner, than to

expose another

man

good of

to evil for the

self.'

learning, the said advocate took back his

ask you, which

being

at the

of this town

he

mercy of

knew

offices

:

so

in the

life

lest

understand

was well informed,

was

was holy; neverthe-

they should lose their

it.

that while

who, speaking of the said '

:

said Philibert

the

prisons of this town, there

of Bourdeaux

wag a person,

Philibert, said to a counsellor

They will

bring you, one of these days,

who

a prisoner from Xaintes,

speak

will

to

you

well,

But the counsellor, blaspheming the name

messieurs.'

of God, swore that he should not speak to him at

and

that

he should take care not

judgment.

I

ask you whether

himself a Christian,

At any

rate,

who would

since he

have no excuse

;

was

for while

judgment of

those,

all,

to

be present at his

this

counsellor called

not

condemn

the just

?

constituted judge, he will

he knew that the other was

a good man, he ought with his power the

I

us

well that his

we must

money.

who would do the like, enemies as he was ? The judges

among

they acted through fear,

less,

I

is

Which

to

who through

have opposed ignorance,

or

through malice, condemned him, delivered him up, and

caused him the

to

be hung like a

thief, the

18th of April, in

above-named year.

Some there

time before the arrest of the said Philibert,

was

in this

town a certain

poor and indigent,

who had

advancement of the Gospel, every day little

to

artisan,

marvellously

so great a desire for the that

he demonstrated

it

another as poor as himself, and with as

learning, for they both

nevertheless, the

first

knew

scarcely anything

urged upon the other that

if

he

HISTORY OF THE TROUBLES IN XAINTONGE.

would employ himself as

making some form of exhor-

in

would be productive of great

tation, that

the second

felt

271

And

fruit.

himself to be totally destitute of

him courage and some days afterwards he assembled, one Sunday in the morning, nine or ten persons, and because he was ill versed in letters, he had taken some passage from the Old and New

learning, that gave

;

And

Testament, having them put down in writing.

they were assembled, he read to them the pas-

when

That each man, according

sages and

texts,

to the gifts

he had received, should distribute them

others

and

;

saying

'

:

which bore not

that every tree

be cut down and cast into the

fruit,

'

:

Thou

my

shalt declare

when

words,

would

Also he read

fire.'

another text taken from Deuteronomy, where ten

to

writ-

it is

thou

sittest

in thine house,

and when thou walkest by the way,

when

down, and when thou

thou

thou shalt

liest

w rite them on gates.'

up

;

and

the door-posts of thine house,

r

and on the

riseth

He

proposed

them, also, the

to

Parable of the Talents, and a great number of such texts

the to

;

and

this

was

first

to

he did tending towards two good ends show, that

was

the duty of all people

speak of the statutes and ordinances of God, and

that his doctrine his

it

:

own

might not be despised on account of

The second end was

abject state.

certain auditors to do as he

was doing

hour they agreed together that should

make

exhortations weekly

six



to

same from among them ;

for in this

that

is

to say,

of the six once in six weeks, on Sundays only.

because they undertook a business never been instructed, their exhortations

it

down

was

incite

in

each

And

which they had

said that they should put

in writing,

and read them be-

272

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

Now

fore the assembly.

these things were done

by

good example, counsel, and doctrine of Master

the

Philibert

That was the beginning of

Hamelin.

Reformed Church of I

all

am

the

the

town of Xaintes.

sure that there was, at the beginning, such a

congregation that the number was of five alone while the church was so Philibert

minister

was

in prison,

named De

and preach

;

and

and the said Master

little,

there arrived in this town a

la Place,

who had been

sent to go

But on the same day, the

in Allevert.

attorney of the said Allevert happened to be in this

town,

who

come

there,

Philibert

assured him that he would be very unwel-

on account of

had

performed,

thereat had been

that baptism

which Master

because several assistants

condemned

very heavy penalties,

to

we prayed the said De la Place to administer to us the word of God and he was received for our minister, and remained until we had Monsieur de la Boissiere, which is he whom we still and

it

was

for this reason that

;

have

at the present time.

But

this

was a power

pitiable thing,

to support the we had the good will, but the ministers we had not; inasmuch as La Place, during the time that we had him, was maintained partly at the expense of the gentlemen, who frequently invited him.

for

But fearing

lest that

might not be the means of corrupt-

ing our ministers, they advised M. de la Boissiere not to leave the

upon the business. like

town, except with permission, to attend

nobility,

By

even though

it

might be upon urgent

such means, the poor

man was

shut up

a prisoner, and very frequently ate apples, and

drank water for his dinner he very often

;

and

laid his dinner

for

on a

want of shirt,

table-cloth,

because there

273

HISTORY OF THE TROUBLES IN XAINTONGE.

were very few rich people who joined our congregation,

and so we had not the means of paying him

his

salary.

In

way

that

our church was

beginning, by despised

folk

;

established

and when

arrived to waste and persecute

it,

in the

:

enemies

its

had so well pros-

it

pered in a few years, that already the games, dances,

and

ballads, banquets, gildings,

had almost

superfluities of head-dress

all

ceased

there were almost no

:

more scandalous words, or murders. were beginning greatly

to

and

Actions at law

diminish

so soon as

for

;

two men of our religion began an action, means were found

to

bring them to accommodation, and even very

often, before

begin

to

to

the time

until first

he had

psalms, prayers,

came

for

members of

The

the

Easter preparations,

hatreds, dissensions, and

in

were reconciled.

more than

did not

be reasoned with by

When

many engaged

man

one

suit,

proceed against another

caused him Church.

commencing any

quarrels,

was not only about and spiritual songs, any

question

canticles,

was only a quarrel against dissolute and lewd songs. The Church had so well prospered, that even the magistrates had assumed the control of many evil things It

it

which were dependent upon

was forbidden

to

their authority.

inn-keepers to have gaming in their

who

houses, or to give meat and drink to people ited

inhab-

houses in the town, in order that the debauched

men might have seen

be returned

in those days,

rambling through the

You would

to their families.

on a Sunday, fellow-tradesmen

fields,

groves, and other pleasant

places, singing in troops, psalms, canticles,

and

songs, reading, and instructing one another. VOL.

II.

18

spiritual

274

WRITINGS OF PAL1SSY.

You would have seen

daughters and virgins

the

seated by troops in the gardens, and other places, who,

way, delighted themselves

in a like

holy things.

On

the

who had

teachers,

the other hand,

so well

in the singing

of

all

you would have seen instructed youth, that

the children had even no longer a puerility of manner,

but a look of

manly

prospered

well

manners, even

people

that

to their

The Church was

These things had so had changed their old

fortitude.

very countenances.

established in the beginning with

great difficulty and eminent perils

;

we were blamed

and vituperated with perverse and wicked calumnies.

Some

said, If

preach

their

we assembled

Others said, that

publicly.

it

were good, they would

doctrine

out of lewdness, and that at our assemblies

were common. tail

Others said, that

we went

to kiss the

of the devil with the candle of rosin.

standing

all

these things,

God

that although our assemblies in the depth of midnight,

heard

God

us-

them

in

were most frequently held

and our enemies very often was, that

we were preAnd when God willed

His Church was manifested publicly, and

face of day, he fulfilled

work

it

such manner that

served under His protection. that

Notwith-

so well favored our affair,

passing through the street, yet so

bridled

women

;

for

principal chiefs,

our town an admirable

in

there were sent

who would

to

Toulouse two of the

not have

permitted

assemblies to be public, which was the reason

had the hardihood

in the

to take the

market-hall.

our

why we That we

could not possibly have done without great scandal, the said chiefs

have been so

;

had been for

in the town.

you cannot affirm

And

if

this

would

that, since

those

HISTORY OF THE TROUBLES IN XAINTONGE. troubles, they

checking,

have been otherwise than

and

ruining,

annihilating,

an abyss the

thrusting into

little

275

bent on

totally

and

engulfing,

skiff of the

Reformed

Church.

By

can judge easily that God detained them

that, I

two years, or thereabout,

for the space of

in order that they

be manifested publicly.

to

it

Church had great enemies, nevertheless

the

manner

she flourished in such a the

Toulouse,

might not hurt His Church, during the

time that he would have

Though

at

enemies of the same,

were constrained

to

in

few years,

very great regret,

their

speak well of our ministers

to

even

that

;

and

particularly of Monsieur de la Boissiere, because his life

rebuked

Now,

doctrine.

and

them,

certain priests

;

but

when any one

some fault, or wrong, they were very prompt of

never counselled you

to take

part in

of the Church was guilty

any one of

to

say

to

do

to

enemies of the Gospel

began

his

and take counsel about the

the assemblies, to study,

Church

good witness of

gave

Your minister has

'

:

this

the adversaries,

evil.'

And

had the mouth shut

so the ;

and,

though they held the ministers in hatred, they dared not malign them, because of their good In those days the priests

common talk and they



said

that

thus

is

The

'

which we cannot deny do not make the like

and monks were blamed

to say,

:

to

?'

life.

by enemies of the ministers

Why

be good.

Which

make is it

in

religion,

prayers, that

you

seeing, monsieur, the

theologian of the chapter, betook himself to making

prayers like

were paid

the

ministers

;

so did

salaries for preaching

:

the

monks, who

for if there

was a

shrewd brother, awkward customer, and subtle argu-

276

WRITINGS OF PALISSY*

among

mentator

must be had in

that,

monks

in the

whole country, he

in the cathedral church.

Thus it happened,

the

was prayer

those days, there

in the

town of

Xaintes every day, from one side or the other.

Do you made

wish

know how

to

little

make no more

they

:

nor did they

make any

ministers.

it

Is

not

did in that respect I

know how

that

may

to

be, the

who hope

before

easy

and malice

for

the sake of saying: ?

However

'

that they shall see the

and annihilated, they

And

endure for ever.

will

will

the

what they

Church prospered so well then,

same

?

now,

coming of

judge, that

to

was only

the

ecclesiastics

of them

do that as well as others

the fruits of the

God

Roman

the said prayers, through hypocrisy

Observe a

'

the

that

those

Church beaten down

be confounded.

For since

when there were but three or four despised folk, how much more He will have I do not doubt that care to-day of a great number ? upon that we ought all to be she will be tormented insured

its

safety then,

;

well assured, since

according

to the

it

written

is

desire

Several village people in

;

but that will not be

and measure of her enemies. those days demanded ministers

of their rectors, or farmers, of the Church, or otherwise declared that they would pay no tithes the priests

more than any other

them very

strange.

thing,

this

:

worried

and appeared

to

In those days, deeds were done worthy enough to

make one laugh and weep

at the

same time

;

farmers, hostile to the religion, seeing these

betook themselves to the ministers

to

this in

new

events,

pray that they

would come and exhort the people of the they farmed, and

for certain

district

which

order that they might be paid

277

HISTORY OF THE TROUBLES IN XAINTONGE. their tithes.

I

when

the while,

I

wept

heard say that the attorney,

who

never looked so merry, though I

was criminal-notary when

suits

were brought against

those of the religion, had himself little

made

the prayers, a

while before the devastation of the church in the

was farmer.

parish of which he

It

when he himself made the Christian than when he made

was a

prayers, he

whether, better

be decided

to

is

out the indictment

was as good a Christian when he made out the indictment, as he was when he made the prayers, provided that he made them against those of the religion

:

certes, he

only to get out of the laborers their corn and

The

fruit

of our

fruits.

church had so well prospered,

little

become good nevertheless, their hypocrisy has been since then amply made manifest and known for when they had license to do evil, they have shown outwardly what they kept that they

had constrained the wicked

to

:

They have done

hidden in their wretched breasts. deeds so wretched that

membrance,

I

at the time

have horror

when they

engulf, ruin, and destroy those of the

To

mere

re-

rose to disperse,

Reformed Church.

avoid their horrible and execrable tyrannies,

drew myself I

in the

into the secret recesses of

my

I

with-

house, that

might not behold the murders, cursings, and indecent

deeds which were done thus withdrawn

months, the

I

:

my

into

had warning

spirits

Xaintes

in

where

I

and of good example, menaces, tumults,

all

was

had come

had heard a

psalms, canticles, and

all

;

and being

house for the space of two

that hell

of the devils

for

our rural glades

loose,

and

into the little

that all

town of

while before

honest words of edification

heard only blasphemies, blows,

I

miserable words, dissoluteness,

278

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

lewd and detestable songs

me

to

as

if all

virtue

in

;

seemed on earth had been

such wise, that

and holiness

smothered and extinguished

there issued certain

for

:

it

imps out of the Chateau of Taillebourg, who did more

They, entering

than the demons of antiquity.

ill

by certain

accompanied

town,

sword

in

hand, cried,

Where

'

cut throats immediately

those

for

;

disappeared. Parisian

money

;

in

In the

'

They must to those who

was no resistReformed Church had all

of the

any case

that there

find

to

who was

streets,

evil,

they took a

reported

have

to

they killed him without meeting any resistance,

and exercising

their

his shirt before life

from house jest,

?

and so they did

;

walked abroad, well knowing ance

are they

naked

with

priests,

the

to

accustomed

was

extinct.

trade,

After

reduced him that,

to

they went

house, to seize, sack, gluttonize, laugh,

and make joy with

dissolute deeds

all

phemous words against God and man

;

and

blas-

and they did

not content themselves with jesting against man, but also .they jested at

God

for they said, that

;

Agimus

had beaten the Eternal Father. In that day there were certain persons in the prisons, to

whom

the pages of the canons,

when they passed

before the said prisons, said, jesting,

help you

;

'

and they said

" Avenge me, espouse

my

to

you.'

I

was greatly

them again,

cause."'

beating with a stick, said,

'

'The Lord

for

now

And some

The Lord be

terrified

'

the

will

say,

others,

merciful to

space of two

months, seeing that the linkboys and blackguards had

become masters Church. ful

I

at the

expense of those of the Reformed

had nothing every day but reports of

crimes that from day

to

day were committed

fright;

and

HISTORY OF THE TROUBLES IN XAINTONGE. it

was of

all

those things the one that grieved

within myself, that certain

who came

I

two

the

other,

open space near the

was hidden (exerting myself always

my

produce some work of into

me most

children of the town,

daily to assemble in an

where

spot

little

art),

swore and

blasphemed

man

in

side against

the

could utter

most exe;

for they

by the blood, death, head, double-head,

head, and blasphemies so horrible, that

Now,

were, horror in writing them.

to

dividing themselves

and casting stones one

parties,

crable language that ever said,

279

I

triple-

have, as

it

that lasted a long

while, while neither fathers nor mothers exercised over

was seized with a desire my life by going out to punish them but I said heart the seventy-ninth Psalm, which begins,

them any risk

my

Often

rule.

I

;

'

God, the heathen are come

know

that

more

at

thus

many

length

much by

;

historians will describe

nevertheless,

the

I

members

'

in

O I

these things

have desired

way, because during the

there were very few in this town.

into thine inheritance.

to

to

say

evil days,

of the Reformed Church

A STUDY

Some

IN FORTIFICATION.

time after I had considered the horrible dangers

of war, from which

me,

God had

was seized with a

I

*

marvellously delivered

desire to design

and draw the

plan of some town, wherein one might be secure in

time of war

;

but considering the furious batteries of

which men now make use, I was almost out of hope, and went every day with my head bowed, fearing lest I

me

should look at something which should cause

forget the things of

mind leapt now

to

which

I

desired to think

one town, and

now

for

;

to

my

to another, labor-

know

ing to recollect the strong points of those, and to

might partly make use of the plan of these,

whether

I

to serve

my

design.

But

I

found

of construction very contrary to

in all these

my

a

manner

opinion; for the

inhabitants, in fortifying them, divide the houses

which

adjoin the walls from the defences of the town, and

make walls

great ;

battle,

and

walks between the houses and the said that they say to be

necessary for doing

defending and drawing along

gines and artillery

;

but

I

to

kinds of en-

found also that

towards the killing of a great

never been able

all

persuade

this

many men, and

my

mind

served I

have

that such

an

A STUDY IN FORTIFICATION.

281

invention was good, and assure myself that

when columns were

time

sway

as

invented, artillery had held

built the

the walls are useless, that

may

towns with separation of the

And why

houses from the walls.

toil

these things,

me

I

and

Truly

that

found that the

for a copy, seeing

town

the walls are overcome, the

a surrender.

to

the treasure

have been employed upon them.

said towns could in no case serve

when

In time of peace

?

however great

Having then considered that

at the

does at present, that our ancient builders

it

never would have

the

if,

forced

is

but a poor body of a

is

town when the members cannot consolidate and aid each other.

In short,

members

as lono; as the

main body. the

very easy

It is

my

contemplation of the

to beat

down

the body, if

Seeing which,

assistance.

;

so

I

my

transported

mind

of compartments

pictures

other figures which have been

I

to

and

made by Master Jacques

du Cerseau and several other designers.

I

looked also

and figures of Vitruvius and Sebastian,

at the plans

architects, to see

whether

to find

could find in

r

invention of the said fortified town

me

I

w hich might serve me

their pictures anything

possible for

designed

hope of taking any copy from the towns

that are built at present

and other

ill

are not concatenated with the

members render no

put aside

such towns are

all

for the

but never

;

any picture which could

was

aid

it

me

in this affair.

Which the

seeing,

I

walked

like

man

a

absent in mind,

head bowed, without saluting or regarding anybody,

because of

my

interest

of the said town.

which was engaged on behalf

And walking

most excellent gardens which

it

thus, visiting all the

was

possible for

me

to

282

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

find (and this, in order to see

whether there might be

some form of the labyrinth invented by Daedalus, or some flower-bed, which might give hint for my design), it was not possible for me to find anything that could

my

content

Then

mind.

mountains, and valleys, to see whether I could find some industrious animal which had built some house of industry seeking which, I saw a very great number began

I

to

wander through

the woods,

:

me

of them, which caused great industry that others, loriot

was

I

to be quite astonished at the

God had

given to them

of marvel at a fortress which the

full

had made for the protection of

said

the

fortress

I

saw

my

during

its

a young

own

many days

saliva for,

:

for the

by an profit

and

;

this

house and

built its it

did,

little

by

having taken the said

its

building

was

little,

snail, I

liquid,

still

and

built its fort.

hardening of the saliva with which

Then

God

in all his marvels,

little

aid to

me

me, and held

in

me

my

thither, to

took great occasion to glorify

and found affair

:

one side and

;

during which time, support

my

I

1

it

encouraged

should succeed in I

my

walked hither and whether

I

lesson from the buildings of

for the space of several months,

always exercised

family.

might give some

to another, to see

some

which lasted

this

at the least

hope that

in

could further obtain

animals

I

Then, joyous enough,

design.

to

for

remainder hard, and knew then, that some time

was needed it

which

snail,

found that the edge of the

;

affair.

also,

fortress of

air,

found no

I

:

there for

ones

its little

was suspended in admirable industry at the same time,

the

and among

;

my art

as potter,

283

A STUDY IN FORTIFICATION. After

I

of mind,

had remained

many days

for

in this

debate

bethought myself of visiting the shore and

I

rocks of the great ocean, where

I

many

perceived so

diverse kinds of dwellings and fortresses, which certain

had made with

little fish

that

from that time

I

own

their

began

there something good for

to think that I

my

contemplate the industry of

and

liquor

Then

affair.

all

saliva,

might find I

began

to

these kinds of fish, to

learn something of them, beginning from the largest to

the least:

I

found things which

made me

all

abashed,

because of the marvellous Divine Providence which had

bestowed such care upon these creatures; found

in those

wisdom

in

industrious,

I

God had bestowed

of least esteem, that

upon them greater industry than on thinking to

so that

the others

:

for

some great industry and excellent large fishes, I found in them nothing

find

the

which caused

me

to

consider that they

were well enough armed, feared and dreaded because of their greatness, and that they had not need of other

armor

but as

;

given

to

them

for

the

industry

weak, to

found that God had

I

know how

to

construct

fortresses marvellously excellent against the designs of their enemies.

I

perceived also, that the battles and

stratagems of the sea were, without comparison, greater in the said animals than those of earth

the luxury of the earth,

and

that,

;

and saw

that

sea was greater than that of the

without comparison,

it

produced more

fruit.

Having then taken a strong these things from close at hand,

was an

I

took note that there

number of fishes which were so weak in that there was in them no appearance of

infinite

their nature,

desire to contemplate

284 life,

WRITINGS OF PALISSY. except a form of slimy liquor

as are the oysters,

;

the mussels, the heart- shells, the cockles, the limpets,

and an

number of winkles of

infinite

different kinds

and

sizes.

All those above-named fishes are weak, as said before

which

is,

but what

:

God

that

he has given

each

to

?

have

I

Behold now an admirable thing,

has had so great care for them, that

them industry

to

know how

for himself, a house, constructed

make,

to

and smoothed by

such a system of geometry and architecture, that never

Solomon in and if even into

his

all all

wisdom could have made

human

faintest trace of

be assembled

intellects could

know how

one, they would not

the like,

to

produce the

it.

When I had contemplated all these things, I fell upon my face, and in adoring God, began to cry out in my spirit, saying O thou good God I can now :

'

!

say, like the Prophet David, thy servant,

Thou rememberest him ? Thou shouldst have made all things

is

man,

that

and comfort

ashamed

to

At

?

lift

thou good

marvel

Thou

at

God

and who

Thy wondrous

and the chosen

1

!

justice

shall

patience

who

whom Thou

the excellent marvels of tain limpets,

to

not

to destroy

and

hast sent upon the

who

he be ?

How

to

men.

will not

long will

endure, the Prophets

hast placed at the

cease not to torment them

walked upon the rocks,

is

and judgment

leave here to suffer and

of those

for his service

time, Lord, he

whom Thou

announce thy

And what

and that even

'

up himself against Thee,

do away with those earth, to

same

the

'

?

'

mercy

This done,

contemplate more closely

God

;

and having found cer-

which are called otherwise goat's-eyes,

I

285

A STUDY IN FORTIFICATION.

perceived that they were armed with a great industry;

one

for having but

upon

shell

the back, they attached

themselves over the rocks, in such a manner, that think there

no

is

however

sea,

the

in

fish

furious,

from the said rock.

which would be able

to

And when

to tear off the said fish,

one wishes

tear

it

is

only slime, or a hardened liquor,

it

off at the first trial,

rock and

it

it,

will

which

off;

it

weakness of

one

fails

to tear

come is

it

and

to clasp is

not

join itself so

any longer

an admirable

possible to

thing, seeing the

The hourmeau, and several for, themselves in a like way

nature.

its

other kinds,

if

which

by putting a knife between the

closely to the rock, that tear

I

attach

;

otherwise, their enemies would soon devour them.

an admirable thing of the sea-urchin

Is not this also

?

God has given to it means of knowing how to make many sharp spines upon its corslet or fortress so that when it is attached

which, because

shell

its

so weak,

is

;

upon

rock,

its

oneself.

Is

it

not

and the

cockles

find

will

shells

heart-shells,

?

made by

the

see

to

the

you consider the

If

and many other kinds

an industry such that

it

give you

will

Have you ever seen a

occasion to abase your pride. thing

without pricking

it

an admirable thing

which have two

fishes

you

one cannot take

hand of man, which could

fit

so

accurately as do the two shells and armor of the said heart-shells

men

to

cavities

and cockles

do the

like.

?

Do you

Certes,

it

is

impossible to

think that those

and nervations, which are

in the

little

said shells,

have been made only for ornament and beauty no, there

is

something more

;

that

con-

augments

sort the strength of the said fortress, as certain

?

in

No, such

arched

286

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

buttresses which rest against a wall, in order to consolidate

it

and

;

will believe

can be no doubt of

that there

always

judgment of the

in the

Do you

think that the fishes

by

spiral lines, or in the

tresses

that this

not for beauty only, there

You fish

form of a

which have the snout so pointed

house were

by

assailed

built in

snail-shell, ?

many

No,

it

is

;

kinds of

that they

above named

a straight line

enemies

their

their for-

abundant other reason.

is

should understand, that there are

eat the greater part of the

I

architects.

which erect

done by them without a reason

is

this,

but

would

fishes if their

when they

are

at the gate, in retiring within,

they retire by a winding course, and following the track

of the spiral line

enemies are not able considered,

it is

to

;

and by such means

do them harm.

tect, in

who

will

Who

me

Prophet

:

'

Not unto

set

I

make

myself

to

man

us,

O

?

saw marvels which the example of the

the rocks,

I

Lord, not unto us, but unto

be glory and honor

myself, that

counsel, to I

be the

not adore the Sovereign Archi-

occasion to cry after

Thy name in

will

contemplating the above-named things

Walking thus over gave

Which being

not for beauty only, that these things

are so done, but for strength. so ungrateful

their

could not

the plan of

;

'

find

my

and began

anything of better

fortified

observe which of

to think

all

town.

the fishes

Then would

be found the most industrious in architecture, in order to take

some counsel from

Now,

at that time,

l'Hermite, had

his industry.

a citizen of Rochelle, named

made me a

shells, that is to say,

present of two very large

of the shell of a purple- murex,

and the other of a conch, which were brought from

287

A STUDY IN FORTIFICATION. Guinea, and were both made in the manner of a shell,

and with

spiral lines

considering the proposition which

the

that

weak

God

was

but that of the conch

:

At

stronger and larger than the other.

namely,

snail-

I

the

same

time,

have above held,

has bestowed more industry upon

things than

upon the

strong,

1

stayed to con-

template more closely the shell of the purple-murex than that of the conch, because

God had

given to

sation for

its

it

I

assured myself that

something more,

And

weakness.

these thoughts,

I

to

make compen-

having dwelt long upon

so,

took heed that in the shell of the

mu-

number of projections tolerably large, I assured said shell was surrounded.

rex there were a

by which

the

myself then, that not without cause, had the said horns

been formed, and and defences purple

were so many bulwarks

that they

and refuge of the

for the fortress

murex.

Seeing which,

my

better for the building of

example from the

I

fortified

necessary for the making of first

place,

square, around which

ber of houses,

to

I I

find

town, than

my

rule,

to take

and other

I

tools

picture.

made the figure made the plan of a

which

nothing

of the said purple-murex,

fortress

and took straightway a compass,

In the

could

said

of a

great

great

num-

the windows,

put

doors,

shops, all looking towards the external part of the plan

and the

streets

of the town

and near one of the

;

angles of the said open square,

I

marked

the plan of

the house or dwelling of the principal governor of the said town, in order that

none might enter

into the said

square without the permission of the governor

surrounding the said square, tain

advanced or ground

I

made

;

and

the plan of cer-

galleries, to hold the artillery

288

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

under cover, and made the plan walls he fore

gallery will serve

the

battery, containing

which are

circuit,

the said square

such wise that the

in

many

portholes along their whole

directed towards the centre of

all

in order that if the

;

defence and

for

enemies should

enter by a mine into the said square, there would be

means ready being done, let

moment to exterminate them. Which commenced a turn of street from the out-

in

I

a

of the said portal, enveloping the plan of the houses

which

I

had marked on the place of the said square,

my

intending to build line,

town

in the

form of a

and following the form and industry of the purple-

murcx

:

when

but

I

had a

thought of

little

perceived that the business of cannon straight lines,

and

that if

my

accordance with a spiral play to

spiral

down

the streets

for

;

town were

my

affair, I

to

play in

is

built entirely in

cannon could not

line, the

which reason

resolved then

I

be guided by the industry of the murex, only in as

far as

it

might serve

plan of the

marked

street,

first

circumference,

me

in

and

;

near

began

form

;

and

mark

the centre of the said square

the

done

this

on the outside of the said

having their aspects, entrances, and

all

to

to the square, outside

a square

the dwellings

I

:

exits,

its I

street,

towards

and thus there appeared

a street having four faces in the

first

row, which

is

about the middle, and winding like the shell of the

murex, and I

this

always by straight

began afresh

surrounding

it

;

to

and

mark a

follow the street

;

same

but,

street outside the

after these

with the necessary houses

lines.

two

streets

round them,

circuit for the

first,

also

were drawn, I

began

drawing of the

because the square and the two

to

third

streets

A STUDY IN FORTIFICATION.

289

about the same had greatly lengthened the circuit,

found

good

it

many

this for

When

give eight faces to the third street

to

and

;

reasons.

the

was drawn

street

third

necessary houses round

I

it,

found

to

another street like to the third, that

is

and always enveloping the

with the

thus,

my

good and useful, and came again

faces,

I

invention very

mark and draw with eight

to say,

last;

this

done,

I

found that the said town was sufficiently spacious, and

came

mark

to

the houses round the said street, joining

which walls

the walls of the said town,

proceeded

I

to

represent joined with the houses of the street adjacent to

them.

to

me

Then, having thus made

my

that

town put

shame

to

my

plan,

others

all

it

seemed

;

because

the walls of other towns are useless in a time of

all

peace, and those which

make

I

sons, for habitation to the

exercise of

many

will serve

at all sea-

same people who

will

be in

trades, while they act as a garrison

to the said town.

Item.

— Having

walls of

made my

houses would serve also as horns

all

from whatever side the against the said town,

length of wall.

one

street,

winding,

picture, I found that the

Now,

it

cannon might

that

by

in the

;

and

the said gate,

town there

straight

angle, into the square, which

town

in

and

brought

would come always under a

and one entrance, which

and

be

;

is

will

be only

will lead spirally

from angle

lines,

in the

to

centre of the

each corner and angle of the faces of

streets, there

will

be a double and vaulted

and above each of these a

high battery or

platform, in such wise, that from the two angles of vol. n.

19

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

290

may

each face one

by means of

out of cover, this

from end

to

end

the said vaulted gates,

and

times

at all

without the possibility of

fire

harm done

to the

cannon-

aders.

my

assured that

mind,

I

invention

some

in

picture,

plan,



God has

by nature.

in the

first

impregnable

would build a I

would

art of

geometry

places being excepted which

place,

if

a town be

model and picture which

to the

my

day among men

concerns the

and architecture fortified

said in

and model of a town the

exists in our

the

being well

part of his kingdom,

to say, in as far as

And

I

town

him a

is

was good,

boast, that if the king

most impregnable that that

and

picture,

may now

fortified

give

my

made

Having thus

I

according

built

have made,

it

will

be

:

By multitude of people, By multitude of cannon-balls, By fire, By mine, By scaling-ladders, By famine, By treason, By sapping. Interpretation of some Articles.

Some is so,

the

will find strange the article of treason, but

that if ten or twelve parts of the town,

it

and even

governor of the same, had plotted together with

the enemies to surrender the town,

power

to

surrender

part of the

it,

it

is

provided that there

town which

will resist;

not in their is

one small

because the order

291

A STUDY IN FORTIFICATION.

of the buildings will be so well concatenated, that

would be necessary

have the consent of

to

inhabitants to treason, before

it

it

the

all

could be surrendered,

and the general conspiracy could never

be

made cognisant thereof. be amazed at my saying

made

without the prince being Item. is

— People

will

impregnable by famine

:

I

say

this,

be garrisoned by very few people

it

can

it

say, very few,

I

;

because

that

few people should be provided with certain years, there are no cannonaders so

for if very

biscuit

for

fierce,

no engineers so

subtle, that they

from before such a town, though

to raise the siege

their

own

Item. it

would not be obliged to

confusion.

— People

be astonished

will

would be impregnable by sap, but

at I

my

saying that

say more, that

if

and carried away the

the enemies should have sapped

foundations of the whole circuit of the town, and

if

they had thrown them into the abysses of the sea, yet so

it is

by such means

that

no occasion

to

circuit

could

still

more

of the walls

fall

And

if

obstinate,

as

many

happened

that the

cannon-balls

as

there

drops of water in a rain of fifteen days, and

the walls to

little bits

be

lost,

the whole circuit of

like chips, that is to say, laid the

walls low into fallow, yet for all

it

still

and dashed about the

by such means they had reduced

not at

would have

be confounded, because walls will

surround them as before.

enemy were

the inhabitants

all that

the

town would

nor the inhabitants injured in their

persons.

And what

is

more,

if

the enemies had

more determined, and had broken away the middle of the said town,

and

been

still

quite through

that they could pass

WRITINGS OF FALISSY.

292

and repass through the said town forty abreast,

drawing with them

and

yet so

artillery,

gained that town

is

it

which

;

thing,

I

kinds of engines

all

that they

number of

to the

would not yet have

know,

will be thought

very strange. I

say also, that

a subtle mine,

enemies should

the

if

to rise

up

in

find

means, by

any place which may be

in

the midst of the town, and they shall be entered into

town

the said

lery, that all the said place

men, so

that

it is

men and

such great number of

in

might be

full

by such means they

artil-

of well-armed

have gained

will

nothing except the shortening of their days.

And

if it

such an

made they had made

should happen that the enemies had

by

effort, that

their multitude

mountains, which were so high that the enemies might

have looked down

to

pavement of

the very

adjacent to the walls, to throw balls and

would

suffer

kinds of

all

by such means the inhabino damage, except it were fear, and

engines and strange tants

the streets

fires,

the poisoning of their air

by

foul matters,

be thrown into the street adjacent

which might

to the walls, but not

into the others.

Item,

made

— The

arrangement of the town would be

with such

subtlety

and invention,

even

that

children above six years old could aid in defending

it

on the day of assault, and that, too, without displacing any one of them from his own home and dwelling, and without exposing I

know

well that

theless, I

am

ready

expose

to

their persons to

any danger.

some would laugh

assured of

my

all that

life, if I

is

at this

above

cannot

said,

make

;

never-

and

am

the truth

apparent by a model, in which will be demonstrated

293

A STUDY IN FORTIFICATION. the appliances

manner,

and secrets of the said

by

that

model every one

the said

town were

the truth, precisely as if the

Question. to

— You make

such

fortress in will

know

built.

here rather a rash promise,

say that by picture and plan you can

make

it

easily

understood, that what you have said about the fortified

town contains

Why

truth.

is

then, that

it,

you have

not put into this book the picture and plan of the said

town

;

by

for

that,

one would have been able

whether your statement contains truth

Answer. said

;

for

— You

I

have very

did not tell

you

judge

?

remembered what

ill

that

to

by

the plan

I

and picture

one might judge the whole, but with the plan and picture, at the

be

I

added, that

same

made

was

time, that there

at

the thing

it

my

expense.

requisite to is I

make a model;

no reason why have

would merit recompense

told ;

you

it

should

fairly that

wherefore,

it

is

a

on the said model should be

just thing that the labor

who wish to have it ? you know any one who wishes to have a

paid for at the cost of those

Now,

if

model of

my

hope you

will.

Lord God

to

invention,

And

you may

in

this

refer

place,

hold you in his keeping.

I

him will

to

me, as

I

pray the

HOW TO GROW

RICH IN FARMING.

To have more ready comprehension of the present discourse, we will conduct it in the form of dialogue, in which we will introduce two persons inquire, the other will reply as follows

;

the one will

:

Since we are upon the subject of honest delights and

may

assure you that for

many days

have

pleasures,

I

begun

busy myself on one side and the other, in

to

I

search of a hilly place, proper and convenient, to build

a garden for

mind

my retirement,

and the refreshment of my

a time of dissensions, plagues, epidemics, and

in

other tribulations, with which troubled.

Question.



I

we

cannot clearly understand your design,

because you say that you seek a delectable garden. all

the ancients

are in this day greatly

It

is

hilly place to

an opinion contrary

and moderns

;

for

I

know

make a

to that

of

that people

commonly seek level places for the forming of gardens also, I know well that some having banks and mounds in their gardens, to level tell

me

have put themselves

expense

Which being considered, I pray you to cause which has moved you to seek a hilly

them. the

to great

place for the erection of your garden.

HOW Answer, civil

GROW

TO

— Some days

295

RICH IN FARMING. after that the disturbances

wars had been appeased, and that

and

had pleased

it

God to send us His peace, I was one day walking through the Meadows of this town of Xaintes, near to the river Charente, and while

I

was contemplating

dangers from which God had preserved time of tumults and horrible troubles,

I

the

me

horrible

in the past

heard the voice

who were seated under certain groves, Hundred and Fourth Psalm. And, be-

of certain virgins,

and sang the

cause their voice was

caused

that

me

soft,

to forget

and exceedingly harmonious,

my

first

thoughts

stopped to listen to the said Psalm,

and having

;

passed through the

1

pleasure of the voices, and entered into contemplation

of the sense of the said Psalm points thereof,

I

was

;

and having noted the

quite confused with admiration of

wisdom of the royal prophet, saying to myself O divine and admirable bounty of God I would that we

the

'

:

!

all

held the works of

Thy hands

prophet teaches us

the

thought that

I

above-named Psalm

such reverence as

in this Psalm.'

would figure

beautiful landscapes

in

in

some

And

then

large picture the

which the prophet describes ;

but soon after

my

in the

courage was

altered, seeing that pictures are of short duration I

I

;

and

thought to find a place convenient for building a

garden, according to the design, ornament, and excellent beauty, or part thereof, which the prophet has described in his

Psalm

;

and having already figured

the said garden, the

same

I

found that

plan, build near the

I

in

my

mind

could, accordant with

same garden a palace

or

amphitheatre of refuge, which might be a holy delectation,

body.

and an honorable occupation

for the

mind and

296

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.



Question.

common you say

you very

find

I

opinion in two respects that

it

first

is,

because

and the other, because you say that

;

an amphitheatre of refuge for the

also build

which

exiled Christians,

we have

Consider that

the

;

all

requisite to find a hilly place to build

is

a delectable garden

you would

removed from

far

cannot take

I

good

in

peace, also that

part.

we hope

that

shortly there will be liberty of preaching through all

France, and not only in France, but also through the world

for

;

is

it

so written in St. Matthew, chapter

where the Lord God says, that the Gospel

xxiv., there

of the kingdom shall be preached in witness unto

That

nations.

all

is

say, and to assure you, that there

seek out

cities

Answer. of the

and

— You have very God

elect of

all

the world, for a

me

to

no longer need

to

what causes

is

of refuge for the Christians

New Testament

;

for

ill

considered the sayings

it is

written that the children

the saying which

kingdom

And

it

it

shall

justify those

you have adduced, written

that

shall be

not say that that

is

it

it

is

preached in

shall

the world

all

be received of

be a witness unto

who

as for

Mat-

in St.

written that the Gospel of the

believe,

all

to

but

it

does

is

to say, to

condemn

justly the

all,

and

;

but says, indeed,

;

that

In consequence of which,

unfaithful.

and

shall be persecuted to the end,

hunted and mocked, banished and exiled.

thew, true

all

it

is

to

be con-

cluded, that the perverse and iniquitous, simoniacs, the avaricious,

and

all

kinds of wicked people, will at

times be ready to persecute roads,

would follow the

all

those who, by straight

statutes

and ordinances of our

Lord. Question,

— As

for the first point, I grant

it

to

you

;

HOW but

TO GROW RICH IN FARMING.

when you say

that a hilly place

erection of a garden,



Answer. tom,

is

required for the

cannot agree with you.

I

know

I

is

my

;

I

do not

to

be an

but

and by no means desire

stop at this point,

by cus-

that all folly, sanctioned

accepted for a law and a virtue

imitator of

297

predecessors, except in as far as they

have done well according

much error and if all seems to me

to the

ordinances of God.

ignorance in

see so

the arts, that

all

perverted, and that each labors on the soil without

jog always at the accustomed

all

it

order were for the greater part

a's.

philosophy, and

I

any trot,

following the footsteps of their predecessors, without

considering the nature or the prime causes of agriculture.

Question.

— You

—a Answer. —

thing which

laborers

in

some philosophy

that

I tell

I

;

and

tell

you

you, that there

without philosophy,

I

in the

wonder

it

when the

is

hear

needed by the

is

is

is

no

art in the world,

required than agricul-

agriculture

is

same thing as a

conducted

daily viola-

and of the things which she produces

tion of the earth,

and

that

to

find strange.

which a greater philosophy

ture

than ever

One would suppose,

with your propositions.

you speak,

me now more

astonish

that the earth,

and the natures generated

same, do not cry vengeance against certain mur-

and ungrateful, who daily do nothing

derers, ignorant

but spoil and waste the trees and plants without consideration.

I

dare well affirm, too, that

were cultivated as duce the

fruit

it

ought

to

story, that there

the earth

day would pro-

way that it Do you not remember to have

which two give,

cultivated daily.

be, one

if

was a

in the

any

is

now

read a

certain agricultural person,

who

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

298 was

so very good a philosopher,

that

by

and so subtly ingenious,

and industry he contrived

his labor

ground he owned rendered him more

that the

came

than

fruit

little

of a great quantity that belonged to his neighbors

whence followed a great envy;

neighbors?

for his

seeing such things, were troubled at his well-being, and

accused him that he was a sorcerer, and that by his sorcery he caused his land to bear more

Which

of his neighbors.

him before them

called

the reason fruits

and

;

make him

to

declare what was

his lands bore so great

servants, his cart

abundance of his children

and team, and with

instruments of agriculture, which

own

upon

his lands,

was

this,

he went

exhibit before the judges, pleading before

the sorcery he used

than that

seeing, the judges of the city

which seeing, the good man took

his

many

why

fruit

the

them

to

that

of his

toil

hands, and the hands of his children and servants,

and the

different tools

he had invented

;

for

which the

good man was praised greatly, and went back labor

;

and by such means the envy of

his

to his

neighbors

was made amply known.* Question.



I

pray you,

sary that the laborers have that

many

will jest at

tell

me

wherein

some philosophy

such an opinion

:

;

it is

neces-

for I

know

take heed that

ye be not seduced by vain philosophies. *

A

story that has been told often, out of Pliny s Natural ?

The farmer, who is its hero, was C. Furius Ctesinus, a freedman. This was the speech with which he introduced before the judges his household and his tools, in answer to the charge against him — 'Veneficia inea, Quirites, hcec sunt, nee possum vobis ostendere, aut in forum adducere lucubrationes meas, vigiliasque et sudores.' True Roman

History, book xvii.

:

eloquence.

HOW Answer, passage of

— You me

1

yourself in

when

vain;' but that of which

approved good by understand, that

Paul says,

St.

is

not vain, but

How

would cause

I

?

make nothing

to

it

know

would venture in

soil

against

you, that

to tell

such a season, that one

more harm than good.

Item,

how

a

will

the difference of soils without philosophy?

are suitable for wheat, others for rye, others for

peas, and others for beans. fit

who

do you think that a laborer should

one might labor on the

are

those,

to

seasons of laboring, planting, or sowing,

the

without philosophy

Some

is

it

desired to understand God.

conclude that

I

opinion.

laborer

'

Paul writes that one must take

St.

human philosophy

Wherefore

know

makes Take

Paul himself; but you should

St.

when

speak

I

heed against vain philosophy, he speaks

my

it

this

ye be not seduced by philosophy,' he adds,

that

through

alleging

inasmuch as

this place,

for

;

299

RICH IN FARMING.

deceive

Paul in

St.

nothing against

heed

GROW

TO

The beans grown

cook, and quite close to

to

field, in

which the beans

will not

be

to

fit

cook

kinds of pulse.

it

;

and

field

there will be another

there produced

that will be

at all

one

in

it is

the

same with

all

Also, there are waters in which the

pulse cannot be cooked, and there are other waters in

which the pulse

will

be cooked

impossible to be able to recite to you

philosophy

cause that

is

I

requisite to farmers

I

because

I

and

to

is

and

it is

not without

first

;

for the

see daily committed in the art of

agriculture, have caused spirit,

;

it

how much natural

have put these propositions

ignorant acts that

my

In short,

fitly.

me

often to torment myself in

be wrathful in

my

solitary thoughts

see that every one tries to aggrandize himself,

and seeks means

to

suck the substance of the earth,

300

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

without bestowing labor for the purpose while,

men

leave the poor untaught folk to the cultiva-

tion of the soil

which

it

violence

whence

:

it

follows that the

produces, are often is

done

Question.



I

and that

soil,

and great

adulterated,

God

bovine animals which

to the

created for man's

has

relief.

pray you

to

show me some

make me

mitted in agriculture, in order to

you

and mean-

:

fault

com-

believe

what

say.

Answer.

— When

consider a

you

muck-heaps of

the

little

will see that

now on

you walk through the

the laborers,

;

a high place,

now on

and then take notice

will see that the waters

a low place, without any

in

which

suffices

on the said muck-

fall

away

said heaps

and finding the base,

a black

it

a time of rain, and you

heaps, carry ;

and

they put them outside their stables,

consideration, but if the heap be piled up,

them

villages,

passing through the

tint in

slope, or inclination

of the place on which the heaps are put, the waters

which pass through the said

tint,

which

substance of

is

away and whole sum of

said heaps will carry

the chief part

muck-heap,

the

for

Do you

profit.

which

is

it

there yields not

that, if

I

the cause for which ;

any

men

you do not

in the first place,

carry the muck-heap to the

and having understood the cause, you

lieve easily

;

?

— believe nothing of give me other reason. Answer. — You should understand, field

for a parade

not see, then, a manifest ignorance,

greatly to be regretted

Question.

the

which reason the

muck-heap so washed can serve only but being carried to the fields,

the

what

I

have told you.

will be-

You must needs

HOW

GROW

TO

when you

confess to me, that the field,

restore to

is to

it

been taken from

men hope

that

RICH IN FARMING.

it

;

for

it

it is

301

bring the muck-heap to

a part of that which has

sowing wheat,

so, that in

one grain will yield

many

now, that

;

cannot do without taking some substance from the

and

the field has

if

been sown many years,

stance has been removed in straw and

which reason heaps,

it

is

necessary

place

substance which has been taken from

say that muck-heaps ought not the

because

rains,

through the said heaps, carry the

main substance and

Question,

For

grain.

beasts, if

order to restore to the

possible, in

mercy of

sub-

and impurities, and even the excrements

filths,

I

soil,

back the muck-

to bring

and ordures as well of men as of

why

its

it

the

away

virtue of the

— Now you

have given

it

to

;

be

rains

it

same

the

and

were

that

left at

in

the salt,

is

the

passing

which

is

muck-heap.

me

a proposition

me muse more than all the rest, and I know that many will laugh at you, because you say that there is salt in muck-heaps I pray you, give me some evident reason to make me believe that. which makes

;

Answer.

— Just before, you thought

it

strange

when

some philosophy was requisite for laborers, and now you ask me for a reason which depends very much upon my first proposition. I will tell it you, but I pray you to hold it in such esteem as of itself it I told

you

merits

that

in attending to this,

;

Note, then, that there

of are

salt

;

will

understand seve-

which you have hitherto been ignorant.

ral things of

good or bad,

you

is

no produce of the

soil,

that does not contain in itself

whether

some kind

and when the straw, the hay, and other herbs,

putrefied,

the waters which

pass through

them

302

WRITINGS OF PAL1SSY.

carry

away

which was

the salt

other herbs, or hay

and

;

in the said straws

haddock, which

may have been

last lose

salsitive

no

all

its

taste at all, in like

muck-heaps

the

by

lose

you see

just as

and

that a salt

long in soak, would at

substance, and at length have

manner you must believe that their salt when they are washed

the rains.

And forasmuch

you might allege against me, the muck-heap remains a muck-heap, and

saying that

as

that being carried to the soil,

might

it

service, I will give

you an example

Do you

well, that

know

not

to the

who

those

much

be of

still

contrary.

extract

the

essences from herbs and spicery, extract the substance of the cinnamon without any destruction to

At any will

rate,

you

will find, that in the liquor

will

cinnamon its flavor, its smell, properties of the same this, notwith;

standing the cinnamon will remain in

form, and will

its

have the appearance of cinnamon as before nor

eat

some of

taste,

it,

you

should suffice to

That



make you

If

believe that there



it

is

that

is salt

in

make you

which

will

else

must be

it

that

your shoulders. to

me

if

to

is

above.

me

for a space

you could not make

muck-heaps, nor

make me

in all

believe.

some arguments

you deny, or head of an ass upon

believe that which

you have

In the

that glass-wort

but

an example which

give you, now,

will

I

is

;

neither smell,

it

believe what

kinds of plants, as you wish to

Answer.

in

you had preached

of a hundred years, so

me

will find

nor properties.

Question.

have

the said

and the entire

you

?

which they

have drawn out of the cinnamon, they

removed from

form

its

is

first

the

place,

you must confess

a herb which grows commonly

HOW in the soil

Now,

GROW

TO

303

RICH IN FARMING.

of the marshes of Narhonne and Xaintonge.

the said herb, being burnt, reduces itself to a

stone of

salt,

which

salt the

apothecaries and alchemi-

cal philosophers call sal alkali

in short,

:

it

is

a

salt

proceeded from the herb. Item.

duces

— Fern

itself

also

of

a stone

to

who make

workers,

a herb, and, being burnt, re-

is

salt

of the

use

said

the

glass-

to

make

salt

which we

their glasses, with other things

when occasion

witness

;

will

mention

shall present itself in treating of stones.*

Item, consider a

little

the cane from which sugar

is

made it is a jointed herb, and hollow like a stem of this notwithstandrye, made in the fashion of a reed ing, from the same herb sugar is drawn, which is no :

;

other thing than a

True

salt.

is,

it

that all the salts

have not one savor, and one appearance, and one action

;

same time

at the

from being

salts

;

and

that does not

venture to

I

maintain daringly, that there

to

is

tell

no

hinder them

you

plant, nor kind

of herb upon the earth, which has not in itself species of salt tree, of

;

and

tell

whatever kind

it

you

further, that there

may

be,

cordingly contain some of

And what in fruits

is

no

more,

salt,

odor, nor could that

you

namely, the The

is

no

some more, some if

less.

there were

they would have no savor, property, or

we

hinder them from putrefying I

am

;

and

speaking without reason,

the principal fruit in use

fruit

treatise

some

which does not ac-

venture to say, that

you may not say

instance to

*

I

it,

and

afresh,

of the vine.

It

is

amongst

I

us,

a certain thing,

on stones occurs in Palissy's

last

work, not

published until seventeen years after that which includes the present essay.

304

WRITINGS OF PALISSY. wine having been burnt, they reduce

that the lees of

themselves into

salt,

which we

call salt of tartar

mordicative and corrosive

this salt is greatly

now,

:

when

:

it

damp place, it reduces itself into oil of tartar, and many heal ulcers with the said oil, because it is corrosive. The salt of the herb glass-wort, when it is kept in a damp place, is as oleaginous as that of tartar. Those are reasons which ought to make you is

put in a

believe that there

is salt

Were any one there are,

I

to

and

in trees

me how many

ask

would reply,

is

salt

kinds of salt

that there are as

as there are diversities of savor.

cluded that the

plants.

It is,

many

kinds

then, to be con-

of pepper and of grains-of-paradise

more corrosive than

that of

cinnamon

;

and the more

more they abound strength and virtue of the said

strong and powerful are wines, the in salt,

which causes the

wine.

To show

this to

of Montpellier

:

be

contemplate a

so,

the wines

little

they have an admirable power and

strength, such that the husks of their grapes burn,

calcine plates of brass, and reduce

and

if

any one ventures

say that

to

the virtue of the salt that

statement

is

is

in the

it

will

common

that

it

does by reason of

its

an argument which should however, things,

I

said

to

will

enable

you

husks,

it is

salt

suffice to

better

a certain

be dissolved

;

;

and

There you have

you

to

for the

and

whole

understand these

to extract salt

kinds ot trees, herbs, and plants

my

in less than four-and-

tartness.

now teach you

not done by

salt or salt-of-tartar in

become green

twenty hours, provided that the

into verdigris

this is

easily to be verified, because

thing, that if one puts

a brass pan,

them

and

so, will

from

all

make you

HOW understand

it

RICH IN FARMING.

305

presently, without putting your

own hand

You

work.

to the

GROW

TO

me,

will readily confess to

ashes are useful in the washing-tub

;

also

you

that all will con-

same ashes can be of use once If you confess so much, it is only in the said wash. enough; for by that you ought to understand, that the salt which was in the ashes has become dissolved and me,

fess to

that the

mingled with the lye, and of the

and ordure from

dirt

lows, that the lye salt,

which

the linen

and

tinctured

is

caused the removal

to its perfection,

in the said ashes

;

whence

:

fol-

it

oily with the said

dissolved throughout

is

having come

which was

that has

it

;

and the

has removed

whence

lye,

the salt

all

comes, that the

it

ashes remain altered and useless, and the lye, which

removed

the salt of the said ashes, has always

property of cleansing.

you

If

will

not believe these

reasons, take a cauldron of lye, and let

moisture

its

salt at the

is

are

it

all

arguments are not

sufficient, take

and

this

because of certain salsitude

draws from the wood, when the other humors

exhaled

you

all

;

by the vehemence of the

chases the hurtful and humid matters so,

till

smoke of wood for it is so that the kinds of wood make the eyes smart and

injure the sight,

which

boil

bottom of the cauldron.

of the

smokes of

it

evaporated, and then you will find the

If the above-said

notice

some

will recognise

:

fire,

and that

when you cause water

which this is

to boil in

some cauldron because the smoke from the said water will do no harm whatever to the sight, though you pre;

sent your eyes over the said smoke.

you, better

still,

that there

is

salt in

And

to

prove to

wood and

plants,

consider the bark with which the tanners curry their vol.

ii.

20

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

306 If

hides.

dried and pulverized,

is

it

hardens and

it

preserves from putrefaction the skins of oxen and other

Do you

beasts.

hinder

to

the putrefaction of the said skins, if there

were not any if

were so

it

be used

think that oak-bark would have virtue

salt in the said

that the

many

times

;

barks

No,

?

in truth

bark had

this property,

but after

it

;

and

could

it

has been used once,

the moisture of the skin has caused attraction, and has

dissolved the salt which it

and drawn

it

was

to itself, to

and has taken

in the bark,

strengthen and harden itself;

and so the said bark can no more be used except

to put

upon the

fire, after

it

for anything,

has been used once

only.

remember which were made of burnt

Another example. stones

I

to

have seen certain

which could

straw,

not be unless the said stones contain in themselves a great quantity of full

of hay

finally

;

salt.

the fire

reduced

Item, the

was

hay there

to stone, in the

is

once took a barn

so great that the said

way

occurs with glass-wort and fern said

fire

;

that but,

I

have

told

you

because

in the

and

tartar,

less salt than in glass-wort

the said stones of

hay was

hay and straw * are not subject

to

* The editors of the works of Palissy, in 1777, frequently

append notes of correction to his writings, which, now and then, correct right into wrong, and show that, tivo hundred years after his

own

time, Palissy

still

stood by no

means

in the

rear rank of existing knowledge. At this point the incredulous editors find to

it

necessary to suggest, that Palissy cannot

say that he has seen stones

made wholly

mean

out of straw.

Rickburners, in recent years, have enabled not a few collectors to possess stones left after the

burning of a hay or corn stack,

similar to those which Palissy detected.

They

are pure

Microscopes have revealed to us minute crystals of

flint.

flint dis-

HOW

GROW

TO

endure the injury of time as a

dissolution, therefore

know also that manywho make the glass for

piece of iron dross might do.

among

glass- workers,

those

I

window-panes, use the ash of beech-wood glass-wort

which

;

the said beech it

is

as

is

would put

I

could

;

say, as

and

nitre

a

vitriol

salt.

otherwise

examples

I

to take

that I

up a great deal

say to you as above, that

number of kinds of

many different

place of

this affair.

but in conclusion,

Copperas and

salt, for

into writing all the

there are an infinite

in

as to say, that the ash of

would be need

find, there

of time

much

no other thing than

could not be of use in If

307

RICH IN FARMING.

salt, that is to

kinds as there are different savors.

are only

I tell

salts,

you, that

borax

if

only a

is

there

w ere r

salt,

not salt

they could not sustain themselves, so they

in all things,

would quickly be putrefied and annihilated. Salt renders firm,

and other

flesh

pyramids

to

and

to

;

witness the Egyptians,

keep the bodies of

their

— with

great

deceased kings

nitre,

— which

is

;

one finds such bodies

still

in the

;

as

I

have

even

their bodies to this

said pyramids,

have been so well conserved, that the is

salt,

and by such means

were conserved without putrefaction

deceased

a

certain spices, containing in themselves a

great quantity of salt

call

who made

fat

hinder the putrefaction of the said bodies, they

powdered them with said,

and keeps from putrefaction,

day,

which

flesh of the said

used in our day as a medicine, which they

Mummy.

persed throughout the substance of grasses and some other plants,

as

well

as

animals.

These help

to

cause the great

strength of a wheat-stem, and remain, of course, after the

burning of a

rick.

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

308 I

ask you, have you not seen certain laborers who,

when they wish successively, set

sow a piece of land two years

to

the stubble or straw remaining

fire to

from the grain which has been cut; and

ashes

in the

of the said straw will be found the salt which the straw

had extracted out of

the earth,

which

the field, will aid the land again

being burnt

because

it

in the field,

it

will restore the

to this discourse

;

and

so, the

straw

manure would, same substance which it had It

for, if

above-mentioned reasons,

remaining in

will serve as

extracted out of the earth.

end

;

salt,

it

is

you

time that

I

made an

will not believe the

would be great

folly to give

you other examples however, because our discourse has been from the first to show you that the rains carry away the salt of the muck-heaps which are left uncover;

ed,

I

will give

you yet

farther, to

conclude

my discourse,

one example, which will suffice to you for notice, at seed-time,

and you

Take

all.

will see that the laborers

some time before they sow the land they will put the said manure in little heaps or piles about the field, and some time bring their muck-heaps to the fields

will

;

afterwards, they will field

to

spread

it

over the whole

but on the spot where the said pile of

;

shall

come

have been resting

for

some

manure

time, they will leave

none of the said manure, so they will throw it this way and that but in the place where the said manure has ;

rested

some

time,

you

which has been sown be

in

that

corn

will observe, that after the

shall

place thicker,

have become high, taller,

greener, and

it

will

more

flourishing than in the other parts.

Thence you may know easily, that it is not the muck-heap which has caused that, for the laborer threw

HOW it

on other parts

was on

GROW

TO

but

;

the field in

309

RICH IN FARMING. that,

it is

little piles,

when

manure

the said

which occurred

the rains

passed through the said piles of manure into the ground,

and

have dissolved and carried with them

in passing,

of the

portions

certain

manure

;

just as

salt

which was

and

said

you see the waters which pass through

them the

earths containing saltpetre, carry with petre,

the

in

after that the waters

salt-

have passed through

the said earths, the said earths can no longer be used to

make

waters which have passed,

saltpetre, for the

have carried with them

all

the salt

:

so

it is

with ashes

used by the saltpetre makers, and so with those used in

and

the wash-tub,

afterwards, which believe what that

is

to say, that the

away

And

if

;

it

which

is

is

why

the point

is

have said

I

heaps, carry useless

that

all

they are of no use

that should

make you

you from the beginning

to



waters which pass through muckthe salt, and render the

manure

an ignorance of very great weight.

were corrected, one could not calculate how

great the profit would be. shall see this secret,

the attention

Question.



would

that every one

would be careful enough

to

who

pay

it

deserves.

— Tell

manure from Answer.

it

I

me, then, how

spoiling If

I

could keep

my

?

you wish

to

have the

full

and complete

you must hollow a pit, in some convenient place near to your stables and this pit having been dug in the shape of a pool, or of a water* service of your manure,

;

ing pond,

it

is

necessary that you pave with

with stones, or with brick, the said pool or this

flints,

pit

;

or

and

having been well plastered with mortar made of

lime and sand, you will take your manure

to

be kept

310

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

in the said pit, until the time

take

to

to the

it

manure be

fields.

when

And,

it

will

in order that the said

by the sun, you cover the said manure

not spoilt by the rains, nor

make some kind of hut to and when the seed-time shall arrive, you will

manure

said

be necessary

;

will carry the

into the field, with all its substance,

you

will find that the

will

have preserved

pavement of the

pit

or receptacle

the liquid part of the

all

which otherwise would have been

and

manure



and the earth

lost,

would have absorbed part of the substance of the said

And you

manure.

bottom of the

ought here

receptacle of the said manure,

or

pit,

be found any clear

there

to note, that if at the

matter, which

have

shall

descended from the muck-heap, and that the said matter cannot be removed

in panniers,

necessary that you

it is

should take vessels which will hold water, as

were

to

;

I

assure

it

be urine of beasts, or what you

you

that

render back

to the

had been taken from

it

is

most

because containing the will

you

carry vintage, and then you will carry the said

clear matter, let

please

if

it

the best of the manure, salt

;

earth the

you thus same thing which and

if

by the growth of seeds, the

seeds which you put into the ground afterwards, will take up again the

same thing

that

you

will

have carried

thither.

You

see, then,

how

it

is

should take pains to learn his that the laborers

trees.

to the trees, constrain

warmth.

art,

and

why

have some philosophy

they only bring the earth

murder upon

necessary that every one

to

:

it is

requisite

or otherwise

an abortion, and commit

The wrongs which they do

me

to

daily

speak here of them with

HOW

GROW

TO

— You

Question.

make

were men, and seem

that the laborers

position

which gives

— That

enemies

to science

for in passing

by

way

times the

me

is

murder them

I

I

know

ground

and of

all

I

cutting their

which

trunk

or

stock

the

and have

cut,

when

hoped as

is

hacked, broken, and bruised,

wood

produced from the said trunk, although they

that

much

say,

many

not caring for the trunk, provided that they had the

which

:

a pro-

is

well what

which the woods are

underwood, would leave in the

that

:

have contemplated

seen that woodcutters in these parts,

remained

upon them

the disposition of the silly,

the copses

in

trees

if

occasion to laugh.

however,

;

311

appear here as

it

to take great pity

you say

Answer.

RICH IN FARMING.

every

again.

five

years the trunks would produce

wonder

I

wood does

that the

not cry

out under so villanous a murder.

Will you hear a good example laborers its

who had

enclosure

new they had made a rented a

and upon the border of the thorns,

fagots for

that

it

piece of land ditch

and

had planted

said ditch they

their hearths, they

to clip their palisade or

the thorns should

twigs and branches

;

;

some time

make

agreed together hedge, in order

produce again a multitude of

that settled

and agreed, on the

appointed day, one of them took a certain volant

which resembles a end of a

stick,

for

portion,

thorns were large, and good to

warming

was time

;

by equal

on the same day, one and the other

after that the

that

There were two

?

billhook, but

which

and so he who had

is

this

tool,

hafted to the tool, cut

his

thorns from a good distance with heavy blows, fearing to

prick

himself, and, in

cutting

them, made

many

312

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

breakages among the stems and roots of the said thorns

;

but his companion, more wise than he, showed that he

had some philosophy and

in his

— having gloves upon

mind, for he took a saw,

his

hand

—'he sawed

branches of his thorns with the said saw, that there

was no

him, though,

them

:

fracture

made

at the last, the

for the part of the

;

but

in

all

the

such manner

many laughed

laugh proved

to

at

be against

hedge which had been sawn

was found to reproduce its branches in two years, stouter and larger than those of his companion in five years that this is a testimony which should

so wisely,

:

give you occasion to premeditate, and philosophize upon things before

you

without cause, that

was needed

set I

in the art

about them.

told

It

is

not, then,

you how much philosophy

of agriculture.

EXPERIENCE OF NATURE.

Question.

now

you think

what you

that I believe

and even

say, of there being salt in the earth,

kinds

all

— Do

in

?

Answer.

— Truly,

have proved

you have a poor judgment:

you before,

to

herbs, and plants, there

ignorant of

that in all kinds of trees,

was

existence in

its

I

salt all

;

and now you are

And whence

earths.

think you that the trees, herbs, and plants, take their salt, if

they do

would

find

there

it

is salt

not

draw

it

very strange

from the earth

if I

were :

....... —

further, that there

Item.

The

is

trees

some

in all

which are planted

mountains or high grounds

I tell

that

you,

kinds of metals.

cannot bear so great an abundance of the

but

You

you

to tell

also in all kinds of stones

?

;

••

in the valleys

fruits as

those of

and the reason

because the trees of the valleys are too

is,

damp on

account of the

abundance of humor, which causes

them

their time

to

employ

and strength

in

producing a

wood and branches, and they seek sun and become taller and straighter than those

great quantity of the

which are on the high lands

:

also the said trees of the

314

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

valleys, in in

oil

case, have

like

wood as Thus you

their

mountains.

not so great a quantity of

high lands and

of the

those

see, also,

why

hum

they do not

so well as those of the high places; and the said trees

not

are

of as long

believe that there

some

you

it

has scarcely any

you

contemplate a if

:

not

will

little

you note a

and the season

fruit,

there

if

tree

the said fruit will be

worth.

little

first is,

tree

And

is

be of an excellent savor;

will find that fruit to

comes a very moist year, and if the have a great quantity of fruit, you will find

and

the

salt in fruits,

if

cherry-tree, apple or plum-tree

year when dry,

a

is

And

duration.

said that

and of bad savor, and of

insipid,

happen

that will

for

two reasons

because the trunk and branches of the said

have not enough

salt to distribute

so large a quantity

of

fruit

;

it

abundantly to

the other, because

the

year has been rainy, and the rains have carried away part of the salt of the said fruit, as

with a

salt fish



which

which might be hung

to

a branch of the

••••••••

said tree.

The

would be the case

moisture of the air and rains dissolving the is

reduced

in

a stone, the

salt,

into water, leaves

salt

being thus dissolved and

its

had been joined, and thence

other parts to which

comes

it

it

that the said

stone returns into the state of earth, and being reduced into earth, it,

it

will

it is

never

labor

to

idle

;

for if

no grain be given

produce thorns,

kinds of herbs, trees, or plants

season shall be suitable,

it

;

or

will return

thistles,

even,

or

other

when

once more

to

the into

the form of stone.

In order to understand these things well,

when you

EXPERIENCE OF NATURE.

315

near walls which have been crumbled by the

pass

ravage of time, taste upon your tongue some of the

you

dust which falls from the said stones, and that

will contain

it

been exposed their

salt;

to the

air,

and certain rocks

will find

that

though they remain

have

on

still

natural spot, are subject to the ravage of time.

And you

ought

to note here, that walls

and rocks which

much more

are cut into by the ravage of time, are

so

towards the quarter of the south and west than of the north,

which

is

an

attestation of

my statement,

that the moisture causes the salt to dissolve,

namely,

which was

the cause of the tenacity, form, and steadfastness of the stone

may even

and you

;

being in houses, dissolves of

which are excited by the south.

Question.

pressed to for

— The

me

you say

to

common

salt

time of rains,

winds of the west and

opinion which you have

that the stone

at Paris.

itself in

the most lying that

is

*The same seems Theology

said

see that

I

now

exever heard * ;

which has been made but a

have been the decision of the Faculty of

Sixty-one years after their

first

publication,

the opinions concerning stones maintained by Palissy (in this place and in the three or four next pages) were propounded in

a public disputation, by Dr. Etienne de Clave, Jean Bitaud, of Xaintes, and Antoine de Villon, otherwise " the Philosophic Soldier."

The Faculty of Theology of Paris

(in

August,

1624) protested against their doctrine, as unscriptural; the treaties

were destroyed and the authors banished from Paris,

with a sentence



fitted to the

notion of their moral leprosy

by which they w ere forbidden T

public places of resort.

St.

dwell in towns, or enter

Palissy published his opinions at a

time when bigotry was not

Massacre of

to



less stern

Bartholomew.

— nine

years before the

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

316 little

while,

of time

and

:

because of the ravage

liable to dissolve

is

know

I

made heaven and

from the beginning God

that

made

earth, he

also all the stones,

And even

and thereafter there have none been made.

you

the psalm on which that

testifies

commencement Answer.



of the creation of the world.

man who had

never saw a

I

been made from the

have

things

all

your garden,

desire to build

tough as yours.

know well that it that God created

I

Book of Genesis,

is

written in the

all

things in six

days, and that he rested on the seventh that,

God

a brain so

but for

;

all

did not create these

things to leave

them

each performs

duty according

to the

idle, therefore

commandment

it

The

received from God.

planets are not idle to another,

its

;

and

the sea wanders from one place

and labors

the earth likewise

stars

is

to

bring forth profitable things

never

idle

which decays

that

;

naturally in her she renews, she forms over again if

not in one shape, she will reproduce

And

that

is

why you have

earth, in order that the

to take

earth

it



in another.

manure- heaps

may

;

to the

receive again the

substance which she gave.

Now, you must here

note, that just as the exterior of

the earth labors to beget something, so the internal part

and matrix of the earth labors places

it

at production

begets very useful coal

conceives and engenders iron, marble, jasper, and

all

argillaceous earth

and, in

:

;

in

silver,

:

in

some

other places

it

lead, tin, gold,

kinds of minerals, and kinds of

many

places,

it

engenders

and produces bitumen, which is a kind of oleaginous gum, burning like resin and it often happens, that within the matrix of the earth fire will kindle itself by some ;

EXPERIENCE OF NATURE. compression

and when the

:

317

some mine of

finds

fire

bitumen, or of sulphur, or of coal, the said ishes and supports itself thus

under the ground

often happens that, after a long space

become great vehemence which

mountains

valleys,

will

nour-

fire

and

;

it

some

of time,

by an earthquake or

the said fire will

engender

or,

;

perhaps that the stones, metals, and other minerals

which sustained the mass of the mountain, and consuming

may

incline

tains

may

in

themselves by

and sink

by

little

fire,

little

the said mountain also, other

;

or,

;

perhaps

it

happen

will

that

the land will be engulfed or lowered

and then

that

tainous

and so the earth

;

which

labor, as well in

And forasmuch you sion

that stones

laugh will

the

its

shall

remain will

;

interior parts

world,

would be

grow within

one

grow

be found moun-

whereon

find

as on

its

it is

certain, that

if,

to

exterior.

when

I

told

you have no occa-

in the earth,

themselves

of

district

by earthquake,

as concerns your ridicule

declare

for

will

always

or reason for laughing at

learned

moun-

manifest and elevate themselves, through the

increase of the rocks and minerals which

them

burn,

will

me

;

but those

ignorant

before

who the

since the creation of

no stones had grown within the earth, difficult to

find at this

it

day a horse-load of

them in a whole kingdom, excepting some mountains and deserts, or other places not inhabited and I will now give you to understand that it is as I have said. ;

Consider a

little,

daily spoiled for

how many making

— Consider a

million pipes of stone are

lime.

you will find that an infinite number of stones are reduced to dust by the carriages and horses which pass daily over the said roads. Item.

little

the roads,

318

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

Item.

— Observe

will see that a

There

masons.

building of dressed stone, and

not a

is

by

dust or into flour,

to

that could

so subtle,

man

in the world,

number

the

great

frosts

;

is

the said

nor a wit

quantity of

stones which are daily dissolved and pulverized effect of

when

the labor of masons,

very large part of the said stone

and reduced

spoilt,

little

make some

they shall

you

a

by the

number of

not counting an infinite

other accidents, which daily spoil, consume, and reduce

Wherefore

stone to earth.

had not

that if stones

or augmented

to

that

it

among

assuredly conclude,

been formed, not grown

first

Creation written in the

would

day be

in our I

;

have before

and he would be very lumpish

could not believe thus,

in his wit

he has regard

if

who

above-

to the

— Give me, then, some reason which may

make me understand how and then

I

will not teaze

Answer.

all

— Above

stones

grow

daily

among

us

you any more. things which

made me

and understand that the earth would,

to be-

in the course

of nature, produce stones, has been, because

I

have

times found stones in which, at whatever part

one might have broken them, there were shells,

said,

things.

Question.

many

difficult

high mountains and in places desert and unin-

habited

lieve

may

a single one, except, as

find

named

at all

since the

book of Genesis,

I

which

the residue

:

shells

were of a stone

be found

harder than

which has been the reason why

tormented myself, and combated space of

still

to

many

in

my

mind

I

have

for the

days, to wonder at and contemplate

what might be the means and cause of that. And one day, when I was in the Isle of Xaintonge, on the way

EXPERIENCE OF NATURE. from Marepnes

Rochelle,

to

I

319

perceived a trench newly

dug, from which they had taken more than a hundred cartloads of stones, which, in whatever part or place

one might break them, were found

of shells,

full

I

say,

so close together, that one could not have put the back

of a knife between them without touching them

from

that time

upon that

me from

is

it

went on

I

which might

mind,

in this labor of the

which

thereafter a thing, self that

as

and

imagining what could be the cause of

and being

;

bow my head,

to

road, in order to see nothing

the

hinder

began

I

;

true, that

believe

I

near

still,

I

thought

and assure my-

to the said

trench there

had formerly been some habitation, and those who at dwelt there, after they had eaten the

that time

which was

in the shell,

that valley,

where was the

thev threw the said shells into said trench,

sion of time the said shells

and the

rotted

salts

like argillaceous

earth,

came

and

to

dissolve

property of the

had become dissolved

salt

and reduced

salt in

liquefy,

and the substance and

of the said shells

themselves that they gave

gealed with a congelation the earth

;

many

it

made

attraction

into stone with

You have has made me

much harder

the loss of their

there the to

they con-

than that of

themselves

form by the said

cause which, since that

imagine and feed

secrets of nature,

out to you.

to the earth,

but one and the other reduced

stone, without

time,

into fine earth,

however, because the said shells retained more

itself;

shells.

in

and thus that the said shells

of the adjacent earth, and reduced

to

and by succes-

and also the earth-slough had become puri-

the earth, fied,

fish

my

some of which

I

mind upon will

point

320

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

— Another

Item.

of this town natures,

time,

I

walked along the rocks of

of Xaintes, and in contemplating their

perceived in a rock certain stones, which

I

were made

in the fashion of a

ram's liorn, not so long

commonly arched and

nor so crooked, but they were about half a foot long. before

I

It

was

the space of

some years

understood what could be the reason

stones were formed in such a manner, but

it

why

these

happened,

one day, that one named Pierre Guoy, citizen and sheriff of this

town of Xaintes, found

in his

farm one

of the said stones, which was half open, and had certain dentations which fitted admirably one into the other;

and because the said Guoy knew

me

such things, he made

whereat

I

was greatly

that

was curious

I

in

a present of the said stone,

rejoiced,

and from

that time I

understood that the said stone had been formerly a shell of a fish,

necessary

which

fish

to calculate,

is

see no more.

and believe that

has formerly frequented there

we the

this

is

lost,

sea of Xaintonge,

countries, from

arms of the

people without cessation seek to take

it,

is

;

for

but

because one has fished for

too often, as also the race of salmon has

some

it

kind of fish

found a great number of the said stones

the kind of fish

lost, in

And

come

to

it

be

sea, because

on account of

goodness.

its

was on one occasion at St. Denis d'Olleron, which is at the end of an island of Xaintonge, where I engaged a score of women and children to come and aid me in I

was and having gone upon a rock which was in need covered daily with the water of the sea, there was shown seeking, on the sea-rocks, certain shells of which

I

;

to

me a great number

of an armed

fish,

which was made

EXPERIENCE OF NATURE. form of a chestnut-husk,

in the

very

little

by which

hole,

it

fish

has no form, but

ever, all

it fills

below, and with a

flat

attached

and took nourishment by the

321

itself to the rock,

Now,

said hole.

the said

a liquor like the oyster

is

how-

;

Outside and above his shell

all its shell.

is

furnished with hairs, hard and prickly, like those of

an urchin.

was much pleased

I

have found

to

taken and carried a dozen of them greatly deceived

when

for

;

removed, the root of the shell, rotted in

and

there in

was a

;

my

and having I

was

the inside of the shell

was

hair,

to

house,

which held against the

a few days, and the said hair

after the hair

quite clean,

it

and

had fallen

the shell

off,

which

boss,

an order

so beautiful

little

that

remained

bosses are arranged

they render the

Now, some time

pleasant and admirable.

off;

root of each hair

in the place of the

little

fell

shell

afterwards,

was an advocate, a famous man and lover of letters and arts, who, in disputing of some art, showed me two shells quite similar in form to the said urchin-

there

which were quite massive

shells, but

advocate,

named Babaud, maintained

stones had been carved by the hand of

and was quite astonished when

him

that the said stones

strange that

I

said that

had taken a form

I

I

and

;

that

the

said

the

said

some workman,

maintained against

were natural, and found

knew

well the reason

like that in the earth

;

for

I

it

very

why

they

had already

considered that these were some of those urchin-shells,

which, by succession of time, had been liquefied, and finally

reduced

to stone



that

is

to say, that the salsi-

tude of the said shell had thus congealed, and reduced into stone, the earth

VOL.

II.

21

which had entered

into the said

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

322

Now,

shell.

of the

since that time,

said

many

have collected

I

which have been converted

shells

into

stones.

That

what ought

is

to

make you

believe that daily the

earth produces stones, and that in

know

the chief cause of the congelation; as

is

the salt,

you may

that because the shells contain salt, they attract

themselves that which

to

places

by the action of a

*earth converts itself into stone

which

many

proper to convert them-

is

selves into stone. Item.



have found

I

were converted

many

into stone

;

of the heart-shells which the

at

same

time, they

were massive, as well as joined, as though the had been

And what bones of men

inside.

have found

that stones

augment

* Fossil bones of



enclosed in stones

in the earth

man

as Palissy would say

occur,

you say of those who

will

money

others have found ancient

it is

is

;

?

human

well

loupe.

A

British

and

*

known,

— of modern growth.

skeleton in the

?

not that attestation

in stones only

They have been

found an calcareous tufa in Peru, and elsewhere. fossil

fish

There

is

a

Museum, from Gaude-

tribe of Gallibis, slaughtered

by Caribs, about 150

years ago, were buried on the shore of that island.

The

gradual formation of this shore, above the buried bones, into a concretionary limestone, was very rapid, by the percolation of water, charged with carbonate of lime, exactly in acordance

with the theory of Palissy.

Roman

coins,

embedded

in stone,

have been taken out of the Thames. In crossing an English river (I remember the fact, and have forgotten the particulars), an army dropped its money-chest into the stream, and, pressed The wood rotted, the iron clasps for time, abandoned it. yielded, in decomposing, one of the glues used by Nature as a stone-maker

;

and, long afterwards, there was revealed, by

accident, a hard rock in that portion of the river bed, studded

throughout with money.

323

EXPERIENCE OF NATURE.

Let us come now

reason

to the

so large a

number of

and why

it

veins,

do not as well descend

The

from on high as run transversely. is,

stones have

which are easy of cleavage,

that the veins

is

why some

reason of that

because above the mass of stone there

thickness of earths

was made,

:

it is

most

which

the water

when

true, that

from the

fell

salt,

the stone

rains, passing

through the body of the said earth, took with kind of

a great

is

and the water having descended



some

it

to the

depth of the spot where

it

thus charged with a

converted and congealed the

earth in which

it

salt,

stopped,

had stopped

into stone

was formed a layer or bed of

there

the said stone being hardened,

and thus ;

far

and

served, afterwards, as

it

fell

and passed through the earths down ;

;

the said stone

receptacle for the other waters which

ceptacle

the said water,

afterwards,

to the said re-

and having again taken some kind of

salt in

passing through the earths, there was formed another layer or bed, which formed and united itself with the first,

and thus,

many masses ment

at

different times, years,

and seasons,

of stone have been augmented, and aug-

•••

daily, in the matrix of the earth. •

Consider a

They

boil

little



the

the water

In the

same way,

all





manner of making

saltpetre.

which has passed over a

petrous earth and over the ashes said that all the water

»

is

:

is it,

therefore, to be

converted into saltpetre

the water

salt-

?

No.

which passes through

earths, does not convert itself into stone, but a part

and so there are very few places

in the earth

which

are not provided with stone, of one kind or another, for

324

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

otherwise

would be

it

difficult to

foun-

find a single

tain.

Question.



pray you,

I

quit, for the present,

me

discourse on stones, and give

a

little

explanation of

these springs, since the subject here presents

Answer.



I

have already

told

you

itself.

that there are very

few earths which are not provided below w ith T

mines of metal or of clay provided with

when

;

stones, or

indeed, very often they are

three kinds

all

your

:

whence

follows, that

it

the waters of the rains fall from the air

upon the

on the said rocks, and the said

earth, they are retained

rocks serve as vessel and receptacle for the said waters for otherwise the water

or centre of the earth

would descend ;

but being thus retained upon

the rocks, they find sometimes joints said rocks, trifling,

be

depths

into the

and veins

in the

and having found an oozing-place, however it

crack or

what

cleft, or

it

may,

the said

waters will take their course in the direction of the

downward outlet

:

slope, provided they

thence

it

find the smallest

most frequently happens that out of

rocks and hilly places escape

and the more

can

many

distant the place

beautiful springs

from which they come,

proceeding from and passing through good

more

will the said waters

and of good savor.

Also,

;

soils,

the

be wholesome and purified,

commonly

the waters

proceed from the said rocks, contain more

salts,

which

and are

better to the palate than the others, because they

always some attraction for the

salts

which are

have

in the

•••• *•••

said rocks.* •

* A note

to the

Quarto Edition, in 1777, informs us of an

application of Palissy's theory to practice, in the year 1705, the

325

EXPERIENCE OF NATURE.

Sometimes

used

I

make enamel and

seek for

to

artificial

flints,

stones

I

to

now, after having

:

assembled a great number of the said

would pound them,

wherewith

when

flints,

I

found a quantity of them which

were hollow within, where there were certain points like those of

beautiful

;

a diamond,

then

I

began

brilliant, transparent,

to cast about, to

and very

know what was

the reason of that, and not being able to understand

by theory, nor yet by natural philosophy, with a desire to understand by experiment

taken a good quantity of saltpetre, cauldron with water, which thus boiled and dissolved,

I

I

made

I

set

;

was taken and having

dissolved

to boil

it

I

to

;

cool

it

in

a

and being ;

and the

perceived that the saltpetre had

water being cold,

I

become congealed

at the

extremities of the cauldron,

which are too picturesque to be omitted. Coulangela-Vineuse, in Burgundy, was a place in which there was much wine, and little water. The domain of the town having come into the possession of an enterprising man, who wished to supply details of

its

natural defect,

M. Couplet was

in September, 1705, the dry

M. Couplet had

month of an unusually dry

studied the theory of springs, which

stated in the above text,

nator, in a

invited to consider the case

and dwelt upon

succeeding work.

perfectly correct, enabled the

at length

by

year.

is briefly its origi-

This theory of springs, being

shrewd student of Palissy

to point

out to his employer, not only on what spots to dig, but at what

depth he would find water.

having been

fulfilled, the

In three months his prophecies

water was brought into the town.

joy exceeded that of the most profitable vintage-time

;

The men,

women, and children, ran to drink and the judge of the town, a blind man, travelled out, incredulous, to wave the waters j

Somewhere, I think, This, among other pictures would look

through his hands, as misers finger gold. Palissy has a statue. well upon

its

pedestal.

326

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

and then

poured the water from the said cauldron,

I

and found

were formed by

that the flakes of saltpetre

Which being

quadratures and points, very pleasing.

my

thereafter considered in

of which

I

have spoken

to

saw that the flints, you, were congealed but

mind,

I

:

those which were found massive,

is

it

proof that there was enough matter

and those which were hollow,

it is

sign and evident

to

fill

the cavity

was there

that there

a superfluity of water, which had dried off while the congelation formed at the extreme parts, and

when

the

humidity of the middle dried away, the matters proper for the

flint

diamond

like little

which into

I

my

remained firm and congealed within points.*

I

do not say a thing of

cannot show you evidence, cabinet, for

will

I

it,

if

you

come

will

show you some of every

••••• •••

kind of stone about which •

I

have spoken.

you another example of the congelation of flints. When I was once at Tours, during the Grands Jours de Paris, which were then at the said I will

adduce

Tours, there

Under

was there a Grand Vicar of

the

said

Abbot of Turpenay, and Master of Requests

Tours, f *

to

the microscope,

formed by the deposit of lived under

an ancient

sponges contain

flint,

common

silex

sea.

It

but that

flints

appear

to

have been

in the texture of sponges that

has been long all flints

known

that all

are sponges fossilized

and loaded with siliceous matter, we have learnt only of late years from Mr. Bowerbank, whose statements on the subject will be found in

second |

the

Transactions of the

Society,

series, vol. vi., p. 181, et seq.

Thomas de Gadaigne,

France. Tours.

Geological

He became

of a Florentine family settled in

Cardinal de Farnese, and Archbishop of

327

EXPERIENCE OF NATURE. to

Queen

the

of Navarre

—a

lover of letters, and of good invention

many and

in his cabinet,

man and

philosophic

he showed me,

;

divers stones

among

but

;

all

showed me a great quantity of the exact semblance of comfits

the most wonderful, he

white

formed

flint,

in

of different shapes

and the said Abbot made

:

me

a

some days afterwards, he took me to his Abbey of Turpenay and in passing through a village which is beside the river Loire, he showed me a great cavern, through present of

many, as of a wonderful thing

:

which one went a good distance under ground, below the rocks

;

and

told

me,

cavern there

that in the said

was a rock from which the water fell in small drops, very slowly, and distilling, it congealed and reduced itself to

a mass of w hite r

flint;

and

me,

told

that they

put under the water which distilled, straw, in order that

upon

the drops which distilled might congeal

straw, to

make

comfits of divers fashions

the said

and the said

;

Abbot assured me that the comfit which he had showed me, had been taken from that place, and that it had been made by the above-named method also, several :

me

people of the said village attested to

was

so.

You may now,

that the thing

therefore, well believe

that

the water of rains, which pass through earths that are

above the rock, brings some kind of the congelation of these stones tion

which

I

is

find

it

it

is so,

very strange,

wood which converts

would vex you much that

which

;

have constantly maintained

You would that there

salt,

to believe

it

if

which causes is

the proposi-

to you.

any one

told

itself into stone ;

however,

and know well the reason why

I

you



it

believe

that is the

328

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

There

case. is

a gentleman near Peyrehouade, which

is

the residence and town of the Viscount d'Orto, five

leagues

from Bayonne, which gentleman

distant

Seigneur de

la

Mothe, and

— a man very

Navarre *

he was once

secretary to the King of

King of Navarre,

at

and a lover of vertu

curious,

company

the court, in

at

of

to

wood which was converted

which many were astonisned

that the said prince

:

with the late

which time, there was brought

the said king a piece into stone, at

is

is

;

and

after

had received the said stone, he

commanded somebody among his servants to lock it up for him among his other treasures then the Seigneur :

de la Mothe, secretary above-named, prayed the said

somebody

to give

him a

morsel, which he did

little

and the said La Mothe, passing through

made me a

Xaintes,

good truth

you may

that

find

in truth, that

I

it,

knowing

was curious about such

hard is

it

present of

so

to believe, ;

but for

and since

I

this

my

town of in

very

That

things. part,

;

know,

I

have inquired whence

wood converted into stone had been me, that there was a certain brought. It was told from forest of Fayan, which was a swampy place which I concluded, in my mind, that the wood of Fayan contains in itself more salts than any other kind wherefore it must be believed, that when of wood the said wood is decayed, and its salt is moistened, it reduces the wood which is already decayed into a kind of muck, or earth, and thereafter the salt which is it

was

that the

;

;

dissolved

in

the

said

# La Mothe Fcnelon, of Biography.

wood, hardens

whom

the

decayed

mention was made in the

329

EXPERIENCE OF NATURE.

humor of the wood, and converts it into stone which is the same argument that I told you concerning shells soft and convert into stone, they it is, that to become in like way, the wood being lose none of their form ;

:

:

reduced

to stone,

like the

shells.

keeps

form of wood, precisely

the

still

And you

how Nature no

see, thus,

sooner suffers destruction by one principle, than she

once resumes work with another

at

which

I

have

you throughout,

told

which

:

is

that the earth

.....a...

that

and

other elements are never idle.

As

for

what

have

I

some stones consume air, I tell you now, not

said, that

through the humidity of the

only stones, but also glass, in which there quantity of salt

;

and

show

to

that

it

so,

is

a great

is

you

find in the temples of Poitou

and Brittany an

number of

bitten

glasses,

the injury of time

moon

has done

;

which are

salt

that the

but they will pardon me, for

the humidity of the rains

of the

infinite

on the outside by

and the glass-makers say

this,

will

it is

which has caused some part

of the said glass to dissolve.

I

tell

you

again, that salts produce marvellous congelations.

The

alchemists have perceived something of

they

vex

their

minds greatly

in

this, for

search of these prepared

salts. I

remember having seen a

calcined lead in a handmill

announced

to

him, he sent his servants on before, and

took a handful of said

lead,

common

which was

having mixed

;

who was breaking and when dinner-time was potter

it,

in

salt,

and mixed

it

with the

a liquid clear as water

he gave two or three turns

;

and,

to his mill,

in order that his servants should not discover the fine

330

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

secret

which had been taught him, of putting

make

lead to

his

but on the return

the color finer;

from dinner, there was a very that the salt, the lead,

he found

fine joke, for

and the water, had so thoroughly

hardened and congealed by the virtue of the it

was no longer

salt, that

and

possible to turn the millstones;

and the lower stones were so well fastened

the upper

was difficult to separate them. There which it was my design to tell you, for the

together, that is

salt into

a story

it

purpose of better assuring you that

salt

has power to

••••••••

congeal both stones and metals. •

wonder very much how people can believe that gold can be of service to restore persons, when it is not I

dissolved

:

is

it

same reasons

for the

you, that you cannot find the taste of in

the

first

instance, dissolve

one does not find savor

wherein the a sick

man

and

in stones

salt is perfectly fixed

find taste in gold, if

Now,

so

gold

you may soak and

:

;

it is,

that there

will not get

it

nutrition of

man

is

boil

dissolves the things

in

It

that

which

it

it

do not,

so, also,

it

is,

which contain

how much it

nutrition

to

that salt,

less will

be not dissolved

more

?

fixed than

your utmost, you to

me,

that the

stomach cooks and

takes by the mouth, and

then the substance travels through

and so you have

it

seems his

have told

I

salt, if

not anything

to dissolve. is

;

that

all

parts of the body,

and restoration

;

but the

stomach of a man, weak and almost dead, how should it

be able

to dissolve gold,

and dismiss

it

the body, seeing that the furnaces, even to

to all parts

when

a heat more than violent, cannot consume

of

forced it

:

the

331

EXPERIENCE OF NATURE, stomach of a

man would need

furnaces, or

understand nothing in the matter.

True

I

be yet hotter than the

some philosophers, alchemists, say they know how to diffuse gold in water by some

that

Now,

can serve

they can dissolve

truly, if

:

to

that will be sulphur

patients to drink

;

say, quicksilver

upon poison

is

and quicksilver, which you

and

;

at the

whose opinions are

;

wherefore,

same time you

I

cannot understand

I will

be silent for the

leave the disputation different

— How

discourse against the

it

Will you feed the patient

a poison.

matter otherwise will

is

will give

nothing else can you draw out of

to restore his health ?

and

it

quicksilver; being then dissolved,

than what has been put in

Question.

potable.

to

made of sulphur and

present,

is

it

it,

know whether, being potable, nutrition. The philosophers say that it

come

us

let

that

is,

it

dissolution

this

to

among

those

from mine.

can you venture

common

opinion of

hold such a

to

the doctors?

all

For there has not been one who has not used gold as a restorative.

Ansiver. I



have not spoken

I

ill

to

you of the doctors

should be very sorry to do so, for there are some of

them

in this

town

particularly to

to

whom

I

am

greatly attached, and

M. l'Amoureux, who has given

me

assist-

ance with his worldly goods, and with the labor of art.

At

the

same

should not take the matter.

I

time, as

it ill

know

of me,

by way of

if if I

well that

say what

many

his

dispute, they I

think about

doctors and apothe-

acries have caused gold to be boiled in the bellies of fat

capons, to restore patients, and said that the gold

diminished, which they have not succeeded in making

332

me

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

You may

believe.

be able to reduce

will not

and fry your utmost, you

boil its

weigbt.

causes

If the salt or fat of the pot

paler on the surface only, that

my

opinion.

gold could

If

won

alchemists would have not be need of so

much

its

color to be found

makes nothing against

diminish in boiling, the

the prize,

and there would

labor to dissolve gold

for after

;

they had boiled a great quantity, they could take the

water

which the said gold had been

in

having caused the moisture

boiled,

they would

to evaporate,

find the gold at the bottom of their vessel, of

could

make

rative

nature

does

?

it

not

know what is the meaning of restomean nutrition, and reparation of

Will you think a

?

little

of things which restore the little

the things that are

all

and you

which they

use according to their purpose.

ask you, do you

I

and

will find that as

upon the

effect

and nature

human body ?

Consider a

good

to refresh,

to eat

and

soon as they are upon the

tongue, they begin dissolving, for otherwise the tongue

could not judge of the flavor of the thing, and the tongue receives no flavor, nor good nor bad taste, from that

which

presented to

is

that neither

it

;

you may by

that easily judge,

can the belly or the stomach receive any

savor from that which shall be presented to them. Consider, also, that there

which putrefy sition.

in

itself it is

;

Now,

not

is

is

subject

nothing good for food to

a notable argument so

these accidents.

it

is

that gold

You may

heat, corrupt,

to sustain

is

pile

liable to

as

you

my

and

propo-

no one of

will

dollars

together, they will not generate heat, nor putrefy, as

things do which are good to eat. to

that

?

Have you anything

What that

will

you say

will legitimately

EXPERIENCE OF NATURE. contradict

my

proposition

333

Perhaps you

?

will say, that

we are bound to believe the learned men and ancients who have written these things, a very long while ago you must not take heed to my speaking, inasmuch am neither Greek nor Latin, and have never even

that

as

I

To

seen the volumes of the doctors. that the ancients

were men

they were quite as liable

and

to

know

that this

is

moderns, and that

like the

we

be deceived as

to

regard a

so,

answer,

this I

the

little

other ancient authors

;

when they speak of

;

works of

many

Lapidary,* and of Dioscorides, and

Isidore, of the

are

rare stones,

they say that some have power against devils, and others against sorcerers, and others serve

to

agreeable, handsome, and victorious

more than a thousand other

virtues

make a man

in

battle

which they

with

;

attribute

to the said stones.

ask you,

I

opposed

not this a false opinion, and directly

is

to the authorities

that these doctors, ancient in talking

me

to

about stones,

deny

of Holy Scripture

?

If so

it is

and so excellent, have erred

why

is

it

you would have

that

their capability of erring

when they

talk

you say that perhaps gold, being in the body, has power to attract to itself the evil humors, as

of gold

If

?

the loadstone attracts iron,

you separate filings,

it

into so

pulverized,

*

ask you then,

many

parts

others beaten into leaves,

tremely slender.

iron

I

which

Now,

if

the

?

for

why

some

eat

loadstone

has, being joined into a mass.

et

Lyons without

it

in

and of a kind exwere thus

Wherefore

Jean de Mandeville was the author of Le Lapidaire,

nant la vertu

that

would not have that power of attracting

it

it

is it

proprttte

date.

des Pierres pricieuses,

conte-

published at

334 I

EXPERIENCE OF NATURE.

conclude,

that if there be

better than those

unable

I

have adduced,

to believe that gold

any more than this,

which

if

inasmuch as

able to dissolve

it.

given to

me no I

reason

must remain

can restore a sick person,

there were sand in his stomach, it is

and

impossible for any stomach to be

THE HUGUENOT'S PREFACE.*

TO MONSEIGNEUR THE MARSHAL DE MONTMORANCY,f Knight of the Order of the King, Captain of Fifty Lances, Governor of Paris and of the Isle of France.

MONSEIGNEUR, Though there are some who would at no time hear mention of the Holy Scriptures, yet so it is that I have found nothing better than to pursue the counsel of God, His

edicts, statutes,

and ordinances

what might be His testament he has eat bread

will, I

* These four

and

have found

commanded

by the labor of

;

in regarding

that

by His

last

his heirs that they should

their bodies,

letters constitute the prefatory

and

that they

matter

to

a book

by Bernard Palissy, entitled A Trustworthy Receipt by which all men of France may learn how to Multiply and Augment their '

,

Treasures.''

This book (though without headings or divisions of

any kind, even so much as tises

:

1.

On

Agriculture

Delectable Garden first

;

4.

into paragraphs) contains four Treaj

The

2.

On Natural

Fortified

Town.

The The volume was

History

;

3.

published in the year 1563, soon after the liberation of

Palissy from a prison, through the friendship, principally, of

Duke de Montmorenci, Constable of France. | Eldest son of the Duke de Montmorenci.

the

338

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

should multiply the talents which he had committed to

them,

in

accordance with His testament.

Which having

considered,

have not been willing

I

hide in the ground those talents which

it

Him

them

profit

to allot to

me

therefore, to cause

;

and increase, according

have been desirous

to

to

has pleased to bring

commandment,

to his

I

produce them before every one,

and especially before your lordship, knowing well

that

by you they would not be despised, though they have, indeed, proceeded out of a poor treasury, being held

by a person very

notwithstanding, since stable,

your father,

and of low condition

abject

to

it

do

me

to

new

invention,

you a portion of the

from

Him

talents

whom

in

which

I

all

I

employ me

an admirable

have not feared

talents

which

gifts

abound.

send you are, in the

to

have received

I

My

feeling in

all

men

towards the earth,

lovers of virtue and just

And because

I

some I

to excite

I

it

see that the

to

gather

to

earth

is

million

yearly in France, above what that they be content to follow that they

who

are subject to

is

my you

to

cultivated it

to

in this book,

be the means of enabling

more than four

art

would be impossible

have put several instructions

which are competent

good

make them

to

most frequently by ignorant men, who only cause miscarry,

have

and especially of the

toil,

of agriculture, without which live.

the

lord,

place,

first

means

rustic

address

good secrets of Nature and of agriculture, which put into a book, desiring by that

con-

lord, the

the honor to

in his service, for the building of

grotto of

my

has pleased

this

;

men

bushels of grain

customary, provided advice, which will do,

have received the information given

I

hope

when

they

in this book.

THE HUGUENOT'S PREFACE. Item,

— Because you

337

are a lord, powerful,

imous, and of good judgment,

magnan-

have thought good

I

to

design for you the arrangement of a garden, as beau-

any was on earth, excepting that of the terrestrial Paradise, which design of a garden I assure myself that you will find to be of good invention. as ever

tiful

Item.



book

In this

rangement of a

fortified

is

contained the design and ar-

town, such

has not heard speak of the

book

many

be told

There are

like.

other fruitful matters, which

you by those who,

to

that, until

and make report of them

I

in the said

will leave to

in reading, shall to

you.

now, one

remember

have not put a

I

picture of the said garden in this book, because there

are

many who

the

enemies of virtue and good wit;

arc not worthy to see

indigence, and the

permitted

I

it.

my

occupations of

know

that

and especially

it,

and also art,

my

have not

some ignorant men, enemies

of virtue, and calumniators, will say that the design of this it

garden

to the

that

it

is

a dream only, and

dream of

perhaps, compare

will,

Polyphile, or will be likely to say

would cost too much, and that one could not

a place

fit

for the building of the said

To

to the design.

find

garden according

this I reply, that there will

more than four thousand noble houses cent to which may be found many

in fit

be found

France, adjaspots for

the

building of the said garden, according to the tenor of

And

rny design.

as for the

expense, there are in

France many gardens which have cost more than

would

this

cost.

Whenever employ me

it

may

please

in this affair,

you

I will

to

not

do

me

fail to

the honor to

provide you

quickly with a picture, and even will put the plan into vol.

ii.

22

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

338

execution, if you should feel inclined to have this done.

And forasmuch

as concerns the plan and arrangement

of the fortified town,

I

know

have not been exercised as

first

and assaults of towns.

To

have begun for

I

their

mouths

will find that

Item.

my

this I reply, that the

work

lord, the constable,

gives

God has given me,

for if they inquire into

;

no

man

has taught

of the above-named work. to distribute to

deny

that

cate to

me

which

is

to

If,

then,

understand the details it

has pleased

God who art,

acquired rather by nature, or natural sense, ?

known

The

and that,

of a town chiefly

fortification

according

lines,

to

thanks to God,

ignorant of those things, to

me

inquiry, they will

a portion of understanding in the military

consist in tracings

well

they

it,

me of his gifts as an artist in earth, He has also sufficient power to communi-

than by practice

it is

to

such a work has not before been seen.

— Having made more ample

find that

will

making of these

seen a number of batteries

witness enough of the gift which close

I

and

in the military profession,

things, without having

which

say that no

will

speaking, inasmuch as

impossible to understand the

is

it

my

be paid to

notice should

some

that

I

I

geometry

am

;

and

not at all

have assumed the boldness

propose to you these arguments,

in

order to obviate

some who might persuade you, by thing is impossible. At any rate, I

the detraction of

saying that the

submit myself to receive shameful death,

make apparent wherever

it

the truth to be as

may

please

you

to

I

say,

if I

do not

whenever and

employ me

in

this

business. If these things are not written with so

as

is

due

to

your greatness, you

will

much

dexterity

be pleased to par-

339

THE HUGUENOT'S PREFACE. don

me

that

I

;

and

am

my hope

you

that

Hebrew, nor

poet, nor rheto-

notwithstanding,

for

by a man more eloquent.

in

such reasons, the

thing in itself has not less value than uttered

will do, seeing

a simple artisan, poorly enough trained

this

;

it is

not Greek, nor

rician, but letters

this

if

had been

it

had rather speak

I

my rustic tongue, than lie in rhetoric. Theremy lord, I hope that you will receive this small

truth in fore,

work with as ready a shall give

the

will, as

And,

you pleasure.

Lord God, monseigneur,

health,

good and long

Your very

have a desire that

I

in this place,

I

will

it

pray

give you, in perfect

to

life.

affectionate

and very humble servant,

Bernard Palissy. From

TO

Xaintes.

MY VERY DEAR AND HONORED

LADY, MADAME,

THE QUEEN-MOTHER. Madame, Some time

after that,

the request of

my

from the hands of debate within

my

lord

my

by your means and favor at the constable, I was delivered

cruel enemies,

mind upon the

I

entered into a

fact of the ingratitude

of men, knowing well that the cause for which they

would have delivered because

good

I

had sought after

to death,

my

I

heart,

was no other than

their good,

that ever could accrue

considered,

of

me

even the greatest

them.

to

Which being

retired within myself, to search the secrets

and

to enter

into

might know whether there was itude like that of those

my in

who had

conscience, that

I

myself any ingrat-

delivered

me

to the

340

WRITINGS OF PALISSY. of death.

peril

good which

It

came

remember the do me, when by your

me, then,

to

pleased you to

it

to

favor you engaged the authority of the king for

Which

deliverance. in

me

seeing,

a great ingratitude

boon.

my

Nevertheless,

given

me

that

I

your own presence

into

them

to

light, in

this

the smallest re-

is

And

could make.

I

recompense of

I

could do you

have not had means

me

you, which has caused

to explain

to bring into the

several secrets contained in

this,

book, whose tendency

God has

although

several inventions with which

service, nevertheless

would be

indigence has not permitted

thank you for such boon, which

compense

it

were not regardful of such

myself

that I should transport to

if I

found that

I

my

to increase the

is

wealth and

kingdom.

virtue of all the inhabitants of the

My littleness has not dared to take the liberty of dedicating my work to the king, knowing well that some would say

that I

recompensed

if

;

no new thing.

had done it

had been

Madame, I

their

have hope that

useful to the king than to

same it

to

time, because of

and king.

reward from kings

this

work

will

be more

littleness, I

command me

the

have dedicated faithful

hope he has found means

I

There are things written

be able

At

well understood by his sovereign prince

to

assist

much

garden of Chenonceaux

to

was a time when

Monseigneur de Montmorancy, good and

make very

will

would have been

it

any other person.

my

servant of the king, which to

so,

there never

good inventions received nevertheless,

for the sake of being

this

to

;

and

in this

in the if

it

building of your

shall please

do you service therein,

employ myself about

it.

And

if

book which

I shall

you should

you not

to

fail

feel in-

THE HUGUENOT'S PREFACE. clination to do this, I wilt do things that

has done up

341 no other

Which Lord God

to the present day.

Madame, where

I will

pray the

in perfect health, long

and happy

Your very humble and very

man

the place,

is

to give

you,

life.

affectionate servant,

Bernard Palissy.

TO MONSEIGNEUR, THE DUKE DE MONTMORANCY,

PEER AND CONSTABLE OF FRANCE. MONSEIGNEUR, I think that you may thank you

at the

time

the queen-mother to

find

it ill

my

draw me out of

to

engage

the hands of

You know

would have found

it

good,

if I

bring you large thanks.

I

it.

my

that the occu-

time upon your work, together with

indigence, have not permitted

to

that I did not

when you were pleased

mortal and capital enemies. pation of

me,

in

my

doubt whether you

had quitted your work

Jesus Christ has

left

a

counsel to us, written in Saint Matthew, chap. 7, by

which he forbids us lest,

turning upon us, they rend us.

counsel,

you

who

to scatter pearls before

for

I

me

except in that

is

this

assuring you, in truth, that those

have had I

none occasion against me,

have urged upon them,

certain passages of that he

had obeyed

should not have been in suffering, to pray to

my deliverance,

hate

If I

the swine,

Holy Writ,

in

which

many it

is

times,

written,

unhappy and accursed, who drinks the milk,

and wears the wool of the sheep, without providing for it pasture. And by as much as that ought to have incited

them

to love

me, they have therein made

for

342

WRITINGS OP PALISSY.

themselves occasion

to desire that

mitted to destruction as a malefactor thing, that if I

and

;

me

to

be put

a true

it is

had depended on the judges of

they would have caused I

should be com-

I

this

to death, before

should have been able to obtain from you any

And

ance.

the occasion

be one body, and one

dean and chapter,

assist-

which moved some judges

soul,

my

town,

and one single

to

with the

will,

some

prosecutors, was, because

of the said judges were companions of the said dean and

some morsel of

chapter, and possess

they fear in

to lose,

paying the

benefice, which

because the laborers begin

tithes to those

who

murmur

to

receive without deserv-

ing them. I

should have taken good heed not to

sanguinary hands, had

would have regard

for

it

not been that

your work, and

monseigneur, the Duke de Montpensier,

fall I

into their

hoped they

for their duty to

who gave me a

safeguard, forbidding them to take cognisance

undertake anything against me, or against well

knowing

that

my

of,

house

no man could bring your work

completion but myself.

or

to

;

a

Also, being a prisoner in their

hands, the Seigneur de Burie, the Seigneur de Jarnac,

and

the Seigneur de Ponts, took great trouble to cause

me

to

be delivered, with the design that your work

Seeing which, those who hated

might be completed.

me, sent me

at night

having regard either

a thing that sieur, the

I

by bye-roads to

to

Bourdeaux, without

your highness or

to

your work

:

thought very strange, seeing that mon-

Count de

la

Rochefoucault, although at the

time, he took part with your adversaries, yet, nevertheless,

he showed so

much honor

to

your highness, that

he would never permit any violent entry

to

be

made

THE HUGUENOT'S PREFACE. into

my

workshop, because of your work.

above-mentioned of the

343

this

contrary, directly

I

town acted not thus

was made a

But the ;

on

but,

prisoner,

they

my workto pull my

broke into and made a public place of part of shop, and had resolved, in their town-hall,

workshop down, of which a part had been erected your expense tion,

and would have executed such a resolu-

;

Dame

had there not been the Seigneur and

Ponts,

at

who prayed

the above mentioned not to

de

fulfil

their design. I

have written

to

you

these things, in order that

all

you might not be of opinion as a thief or murderer.

I

that

I

had been imprisoned

know how

well you will be

remember these things in the fitting time and place, and how much more your work will cost you, for the wrong that has been done towards you in my person at the same time, I hope that, following the counsel of God, you will return them good for evil,

able to

:

which

my

is

my

power,

which

it

I

desire will

;

my

and, on

endeavor

to

part,

I

will

Which

is

the

pray the Lord God, monseigneur,

give you, in perfect health, long and

Your very humble and

to

be regardful of the good

has pleased you to do to me.

place where

and according

happy

to

life.

affectionte servant,

Bernard Palissy.

TO THE READER — SALUTATION. Friend Reader, Since fallen

it

now

has pleased into

God

your hands,

that this writing should I

be

pray you be not so indo-

344

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

lent or rash as to content yourself with the reading of

the beginning or a part thereof; but, in order to carry-

away from

it

some

fruit,

take pains to read the whole,

without having regard to the littleness and abject condition of the author, nor yet to his language, rustic ill

and

adorned, assuring yourself that you will find nothing

more or less and the things which at the beginning will seem to you impossible, you will find them at last true and easy Above all things, I pray you to call to to be believed. mind a passage which is in the Holy Scripture, there in this writing

where

St.

which

not of profit to you,

Paul says, that each one according as he

has received

gifts,

Following which,

who

is

should distribute thereof to others.

pray you

I

to instruct the laborers,

may

are unlettered, that they

:

and, especially,

let

which concerns manure-heaps, book, be divulged and also, so

long as

man could if

There

my

may

on is

estimate

that

this subject

I

made manifest

be needed,

how

and precept

that secret

high esteem as the thing merits.

be,

able care-

study in natural philosophy, according to

fully to

counsel

made

be

till

have put to

into this

them; and that

they hold

Since so

it

it is,

in as

that

no

great the profit in France would

they would accept any counsel.

in certain parts of

Gascony, and some other

regions of France, a kind of earth called marl, with

which the laborers manure

their fields,

that

it

is

Also they say, that when a

of more value than dung. field

and say

has been manured with the said earth,

it

will suffice

for ten years. If I see that

my

writings are not despised, and that

they are put in execution,

I

shall take pains to

the said marl in this region of Xaintonge,

seek for

and

will

345

THE HUGUENOT'S PREFACE,

make know

a third hook* by which

customed

people to

way of those who are acknow that they who hate me,

according to the

to its use.

approve

will not

all

and even the method of applying

the said marl,

to fields,

it

teach

I will

I

my

work, nor will the malicious and

ignorant, for they are enemies to every virtue.

be

justified against their

tions,

call

will

I

most cultivated

the

all

and men who

minds of France,

philosophers,

well, full of virtue

and good manners, who,

will hold

in a

my

work

language

with a

in their esteem,

rustic

and

they will

fault,

to

calumnies, envies, and detrac-

witness

to

But

know,

though

it

be written

and

if

they meet

ill-polished

know very

I

live

;

well

how

to

allow for

the condition of the author. I

know

that

would need the

some ignorant men will say, that it power of a king to make a garden ac-

cording to the design that to this

as

I

have put in

some might

And

think.

that just as in a

book

but

;

would not be so great

reply, that the expense

I

this

also,

it

must be understood,

book of medicine there are divers

remedies as there are divers maladies, and each

man

takes according to his need, according to the diversity

my

of complaint, so, in like case, out of the design for

garden, individuals might draw according to the bearings and conveniences of the spots which they inhabit.. I

know,

also, that

many

fortified

town, which

say that

it is

* In his

essay which ii.

;

laugh at the design of the

have put

into this book,

but to this

last publication

the second to

vol.

reverie

I

will

(which

I

fulfils this

23

pledge.

will

reply, that if there

is his

which Palissy attached

and

third book, but only

his

name)

there is

an

WRITINGS OF PALISSY.

346

be any lord knight of the orders, or other captains, so far curious to

know

the truth of

it,

power of

neither slaves nor subjects to the

but to use

them

it

little

of

it

and model of the

picture

to

truth of the thing. I

know

I

have not put

into this

book the picture of the said garden, nor yet of the tified

town

but to this

;

my

the occupation of I

my

reply, that

I

art

would not permit

great liberality

toward the public good

to restrain

same

at the

;

me

it.

many

in

per-

myself from too

time, the desire

will incite

for-

indigence and

have also found so much ingratitude

sons, that this has caused

let

understanding by

to obtain

that they will find strange that

be

money,

their

contentment of their minds,

for the

part with a

and meaning

me some day

an opportunity of making the picture of the

have

I

to take

said gar-

den, according to the tenor and design written in this

But I would

book.

that after

service,

I

shall

them not

Roman

who have

beg of the

have occupied

will please

it

good, as the

done,

like to

nobility of France,

my

time to do them

to return

ecclesiastics of this

desired to get

me

me

evil for

town have

hung, for having

sought on their behalf the greatest good that could accrue to them, which

is,

for

having wished

them

to incite

commandment. And no man can say that ever I have done them any wrong but because I urged upon them their perdition, to

feed their flocks, following God's

;

according thus to

to the

eighteenth of the Apocalypse, seeking

amend them

had shown

to

and because many times,

;

them a

miah, where he says

text, written in the :

'

Woe

Prophet Jere-

unto you, pastors,

drink the milk and wear the wool, and leave scattered

upon the mountains

also, I

!

I

will

my

who

sheep

demand them

THE HUGUENOT'S PREFACE. again of your hands

347

they seeing such a thing, instead

;'

of amending, hardened themselves, and banded themselves together against the light, in order to walk the

remainder of their days luxuries

in darkness,

and carnal desires

following the

which they were accus-

to

tomed. I

never should have thought

they would have wished

my

that,

to take

for

cause,

that

occasion to put

me

to

death.

God

done

me, they have had no other occasion than the

to

is

witness, that for the evil they have

This notwithstanding,

above-named.

pray

I

God

to

Which will be the place pray each one who shall see this book, to

that he will better them.

where

will

I

make himself a first

discourse,

which

prized and honored

simple

may

may none

is

a just

also, as I

;

toil,

and worthy

have above

to

of us be rebuked at the

last

whom

be

said, that the

be instructed by the wise, in order that

day

hidden talents in the earth, inasmuch as they by

my

friend of agriculture, according to

for

we

having

we know

that

they shall have thus been hidden, will be

banished from the eternal kingdom, from before the face of

Him who

without end.

lives

and reigns

Amen.

END.

eternally, world

* /

BRIGHAM YOUNG UNIVERSITY

3 1197 20917 9735

OSWEGO

f\\c& ^ A, CITY LIBRARY,

OSWEGO,

N. X.

A fine of two cents a day must be paid on

each volume kept over time. Borrowers finding this book mutilated or unwarrantably defaced are expected to report it. The intentional injury of books or other property of a Public Library incurs, by statute, a liability to a fine, or imprisonment, or both of them.

THE RECORD BELOW MUST NOT BE MADE OR ALTERED BY THE BORROWER.

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